When I can’t find a word I’m looking for, I like to make one up. It’s kind of like turning a stick into a simple tool. If a new word is truly needed, it allows for greater ease of thought and communication. If it’s a truly useful new idea, it can change the way people think.
Here are two that I take credit for coining (but having heard a hundred stories about people who think they made something up and didn’t, I could be wrong):
causiflation n. The act of conflating causation with correlation. In our Google Reader days, when friends would routinely debate policy and politics and science and tech news, the phrase “conflating causation with correlation,” which generally means “assuming that one thing causes another just because they tend to correlate” was used far too often for such a mouthful — so I shortened it.
Ex. “I don’t think that being in a stable relationship makes you happy — you’re causiflating.”
ruby slipper moment n. The moment of realization that the solution to a problem has been in your own hands the whole time. Based, of course, off the Wizard of Oz.
Ex. “We were looking for a warehouse to film in and I just realized I work in a warehouse!”
Now I’m looking for another word, an adjective that means “awareness of self as unrestrained by social norms.” For example, some people feel like they legitimately can’t jump up onto a table and yell, stand up and leave in the middle of a conversation, kill someone, etc., and others are more in tune with the fact that they can do all these things but are choosing to hold back. It should imply an awareness that all of the rules are all made up, and an ability to move around and between these rules.
Also, have you made up some words? Which ones?