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Encyclopedia > Anorak (slang)

In British slang, anorak has come to mean "geek" or "nerd." There are two possible explanations for the evolution of this usage of the word. The first (and probably best known) explanation is that it stems from the use of anoraks (a type of rain jacket) by train spotters, and eventually came to be used to refer to anyone with an unfathomable interest in trivial information regarded as boring by the rest of the population—aided by the intuition that only a geek would wear something so terminally unfashionable. Slang, is the non-standard or non-dialectal use of words in a language of a particular social group, and sometimes the creation of new words or importation of words from another language. ... Look up Geek in Wiktionary, the free dictionary A geek (pronunciation /gi:k/ ) is a person who is fascinated, perhaps obsessively, by obscure or very specific areas of knowledge and imagination. ... The character of Steve Urkel in the television show Family Matters is a nerd. ... Inuit parka. ... This article is about the hobby of train spotting, for other uses see Trainspotting. ...


The word can be qualified by the area in which the person takes an (implied) excessive interest; for example in education, a "timetabling anorak" would be someone who found the process of timetabling classes fascinating. Also, recently this word has come to mean a blend of the nerd and geek cultures, and is especially used to refer to the more obsessive science fiction fans.


In contrast to the above explanation of the derivation, an alternative has been offered. This other theory states that the usage was reportedly derived from the weatherproof upper clothing worn by enthusiasts of offshore radio who would, despite their lack of familiarity with maritime life, sometimes travel from British ports in small boats to visit the ships from which their outcast heroes broadcast during the 196776 period. The collective impression of their brightly coloured garments in the coastal murk of the North Sea was presumably memorable to the crews of those "pirate ships" who had restricted contact with the mainland due to the Marine Broadcasting Offences Act and the visits might have had an important morale-boosting role, although the wearers of the garments might often have regretted the discomfort of those sea-tossed journeys. In rough weather the anoraks were far more visible than their distressed wearers; hence they were identified by the style of their outer garments. The term was reportedly coined by Andy Archer, a disc jockey of the period. The usage became generalised to mean an obsessive enthusiast of any outdoor activity, and later to an enthusiast of other unfashionable activities. Offshore radio refers to the practice of radio broadcasting from ships or fixed maritime structures, usually in international waters. ... 1967 (MCMLXVII) was a common year starting on Sunday of the Gregorian calendar (the link is to a full 1967 calendar). ... 1976 (MCMLXXVI) was a leap year starting on Thursday (the link is to a full 1976 calendar). ... The North Sea is a sea of the Atlantic Ocean, located between the coasts of Norway and Denmark in the east, the coast of the British Isles in the west, and the German, Dutch, Belgian and French coasts in the south. ... The Marine, etc, Broadcasting (Offences) Act was introduced in the UK in 1967, and, broadly speaking, prohibits broadcasting (i. ... For other meanings of DJ, see DJ (disambiguation). ...


See also

  • Anorankh

  Results from FactBites:
 
Wikipedia: Anorak (178 words)
An anorak is a type of heavy jacket with a hood, generally lined with fur or fun fur, so as to protect the face from a combination of sub-zero temperatures and wind.
Inuit anoraks have to be regularly soaked with train oil (fish oil) to keep their water resistance.
Anorak is also the name of a British parody on a tabloid.
Anorak (slang) - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (238 words)
It was reportedly derived from the weatherproof upper clothing worn by enthusiasts of offshore radio who would, despite their lack of familiarity with maritime life, sometimes travel from British ports in small boats to visit the ships from which their outcast heroes broadcast during the 1967–76 period.
In rough weather the anoraks were far more visible than their distressed wearers; hence they were identified by the style of their outer garments.
The term was reportedly coined by Andy Archer, a disc jockey of the period.
  More results at FactBites »

 
 

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