A few of my favorite new words


Todd Melby, 5/13/08 • One of my favorite sections in Worlds Away: New Suburban Landscapes, the book that accompanies the current show on suburbia at the Walker Art Center, is the lexicon of new words and phrases collected by Rachel Hooper and Jayme Yen. I’ll list a few here, along with the definitions provided in the book, which was edited by Andrew Blauvelt, design director at the Walker. By the way, at the Walker’s website you can add your own creations or do it in the comment section of this blog.

For more from Todd Melby, go to Building Minnesota

Ball pork: A stadium hosting privately owned sports teams and built primarily with public funds.

Edifice rex: An extremely large new house, often built in an older suburb of smaller homes, characterized by an ostentatious, over-size façade. (See also: McMansion, monster home, starter castle, tract mansion)

Garage Mahal: A large or opulent garage or parking structure

Snout house: A house from which the garage protrudes like a nose from the main residence toward the street.

Drive ‘til you qualify: A phrase used by real estate agents whereby potential homebuyers travel away from the workplace until they reach a community in which they can afford to buy a home that meets their standards.

Nerdistan: An upscale suburb or suburban city in which a large percentage of the population is employed by nearby high-tech industries,

Patio Man: A satirical term coined by David Brooks to describe a suburban Republican man who lives with his wife (dubbed Realtor Mom) and is obsessed with backyard leisurely pursuits and the latest in outdoor grilling technology.