Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Play that Funky Music (White Boy)

funny word of the day: funk

Definition from Merriam-Webster:

Pronunciation: \ˈfəŋk\
Function: noun
Etymology: probably ultimately from French dial. (Picard) funquer to give off smoke
Date: 1623
: a strong offensive smell

Function: verb
Date: circa 1739
intransitive verb
: to become frightened and shrink back
transitive verb
1 : to be afraid of : dread
2 : to shrink from undertaking or facing

Function: noun
Etymology: perhaps from obsolete Dutch dial. (Flanders) fonck
Date: 1743
1 a : a state of paralyzing fear b : a depressed state of mind
2 : one that funks : coward
3 : slump

Function: noun
Etymology: back-formation from 2funky
Date: 1959
1 : music that combines traditional forms of black music (as blues, gospel, or soul) and is characterized by a strong backbeat
2 : the quality or state of being funky

My favorites are the first and last definitions. I like Funk music (nothing like a good George Clinton or James Brown song to get you going); however, I am not a fan of funky smells, which I encounter often on the NYC subway and when I pass homeless people on street corners.

Here's a list of the 100 Greatest Funk songs: http://digitaldreamdoor.nutsie.com/pages/best_rb-funk.html

Funk is also used to describe a feeling of depression or sadness, like in the phrase "in a blue funk."

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