I suppose when asked if I have a nickname, I could lugubriously point out that “I lack a sobriquet,” but I would feel like an idiot.
Sobriquet can also be occasionally used to mean a place, like “The Met” rather than The Metropolitan Opera or the Metropolitan Museum of Art. The problem becomes then which of these two items — both commonly called “the Met” do you mean?
Mostly, it means “nick-name.” Generally, for a person, not a place. I think airports may be the only things that get nicknames that stick. Logan is always Boston as LAX is Los Angeles.
After more than 30 years as a tech writer, I find fancy versions of simple words weirdly off-putting. I also taught technical writer for a few years and if there is one thing we carefully beat into our young writer’s heads was that using a complicated “look it up” word when a simple, easy-to-understand one is available will pretty much always annoy and confuse readers.
The more flowery and “complicated” the text, the worse the writing is. A lot of people use twenty-dollar words because they think it makes them sound smarter.
It really doesn’t work.
Use the five dollar word. Reading is not supposed to be a vocabulary test unless you are in fifth grade and it’s a reader and they are making you do it. That’s what makes “readers” so very popular and why kids are so eager to engage with them.
I don’t have a sobriquet. I also don’t have a nick-name.
Categories: Daily Prompt