New York Times, “Things Are Going Zimmo”

February 14, 2013

Richard Sandomir, “Things Are Going Zimmo” (Bats blog, New York Times, Feb. 14, 2013)

Ben Zimmer, the language columnist for The Boston Globe — he has never been called Zimmo to his face — said in an e-mail that Wednesday’s bit of Fred Speak “strikes me as a playful ad hoc formation, possibly influenced by such cartoonish words as ‘whammo’ and ‘blammo,’ onomatopoetically suggesting an explosion.”

He noted that some early 20th-century sportswriters called the infielder Heinie Zimmerman, Zimmo. But it would seem farfetched for Wilpon to have been thinking about a former New York Giant and Chicago Cub who played from 1907 to 1919.

A Mets spokesman declined to respond to a request to learn more about Wilpon’s seemingly impromptu word formation.

Zimmer wondered if two other words — zoom and boom — helped fuel Wilpon’s use of zimmo.

“They would be appropriate sound effects for a rapidly growing real estate market,” Zimmer said.

Read the rest here.

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