Verbal Diarrhea


As well as providing a quick and handy reference for spelling that tricky word Diarrhea ("diarrhoea" in some places!), this phrase refers to a chronic inability to say something in less than a page when one sentence would suffice. (Also known as logorrhea, but that doesn't make a nice WikiWord.)

See TheElementsOfStyle for excellent advice: People, when sufficiently frustrated, may choose to use this as a WikiTag.

The page title also nicely describes the behaviour of just having to add a comment to every page, or even to every comment on a page, whether or not one has something worthwhile to contribute. This comment might be a self-referential example.

Not to be confused with VerbalPunctuation...a particularly, um, like, nasty artefact of, like, American English ;-)

The shortest exchange of letters

After publishing "Les Miserables" and awaiting the public's reaction to his book, Victor Hugo went on vacation and he sent a letter to his publisher: the letter contained a single symbol: a question mark ("?") (in other words, "how did the public react?"); the publisher answered with an exclamation mark ("!") (in other words the public's reaction was amazingly positive!).

The shortest answer to an exam question The question in the philosophy exam was: "What is guts? Discuss.". The student's essay in response: "This." (UrbanLegend)

Not an UrbanLegend: My friend's PhD exam for anthropology was one question: "What about time?"

See TimeToMakeItShort

VerbalDiarrhea is a WikiSmell.

View edit of September 11, 2004 or FindPage with title or text search