Monday, June 23, 2008

Shmooshlin' Yer Smackers


Sometimes, it’s hard to lay your hands on precisely the repository of information you need.

The internet has helped in this regard, complementing bookshelf favourites like dictionaries, thesauri rex and atlases of haddock anatomy with all manner of reference materials — from the excellent Theoi Greek mythology website to 1001 Donkey Ailments And Their Practical Surgery-Free Solutions (I’d link to the latter but, sadly, the server is down).

Today, however, I find myself baffled, despite inputting more surf time than a VW van-load of tanned stupid men.

So here’s my conundrum.

It’s been many years since I slapped on a little lipstick, but I don’t suppose it’s changed much in the intervening decades. Assuming your aim is relatively good and your artistic expression conservative, you can cover most of your lips in a single swirl — two if it’s lipstick you haven’t used in a while (or if your lips are chapped or crammed with studs).

Then there’s that thing you do, isn’t there? Where you wiggle your lips back and forth like amourous eels aslither till the colour has spread right to the edges?

So here’s where you guys come in, my cheery visitorinioes. Most of you are female, so I’m hoping at least one of you can help. If it turns out that you all gang up on me in my ignorance, then so be it, but for the moment, I’m genuinely clueless.

I’m looking for the word that describes this lipstick-smearing activity. ‘Wiggle’ is close, but better suited to descriptions of baboon’s bums or Stan Laurel’s ears, and ‘pucker’ isn’t right either. I’ve tried making a few words up and so far, the best I have are flubbulate and shmooshle, as in “she paused to shmooshle the remains of her lipstick round her lips.”

Any suggestions?

28 comments:

Kiersten said...

Man, if I had known you'd need this help, I would have started wearing more makeup years ago. Never been a lipstick kind of a gal.

Sealed? Blotted? Rubbed?

Sorry I can't offer more help. Where's an Avon lady when you need one?

Kiersten said...

(My vote's for shmooshle, just so you know.)

Whirlochre said...

Hmmm.

This is tricky. Sealed, blotted and rubbed all describe elements of the activity, but not the whole lippity-smackity-smudgity-painty thing.

Shmooshle is definitely my fave too, and may even be decypherable in context.

Now I think about it, 'flubbulate' sounds more like what you'd do to reupholster a whale.

Kiersten said...

Yeah, sorry. I feel like I'm playing dress-up when I try to wear lipstick.

Flubbulate definitely does not work. Shmooshle may very well depending on the style of the piece.

Whirlochre said...

OK, thanks Kiersten.

Kiersten said...

Anytime. (Also, I would be very interested in hearing why you were wearing lipstick, even if it was decades ago.)

Whirlochre said...

I was on the run from the Mafia.

Kiersten said...

Were they trying to kill you because you were wearing lipstick?

Whirlochre said...

Nope — because I stole the Big Guy's secret stash.

Kiersten said...

His stash of lipstick? How could you?

No wonder he was mad.

Whirlochre said...

Literally red with rouge.

Miss Savannah Spitfire: said...

I call it a lip smack, as in, 'she smacked her lips together'.

Or 'lipstick smoothing smack'.

Whirlochre said...

Thanks Miss S.

Bernita said...

Whirl, thank you for the outrageouslu flattering comment at the Roast.
~smacks a red one on you~

smiggled?

Whirlochre said...

(blushes so big red one blends in)

Thanks, B.

Actually, smiggled isn't bad, but I can also see this one used to describe how Gollum disposed of the Lammas Bread in LOTR.

writtenwyrdd said...

Pressed together seems to be the going term. At least, that's how I've read it. Blotting them on a piece of toilet tissue or kleenex is another activity that I've seen done. I hate the stuff, so other than this there's not much else I can say.

I think your word choice will depend on whether you are aiming for sarcasm, straight humor or serious tone.

Perhaps rethink the gesture and go for something about this lip blotting activity that is unique to the individual in question?

Whirlochre said...

Thanks WW.

I'm beginning to conclude there is no singular word for this, and though shmooshle is pretty good, it isn't quite right for the particular character or the tone of the description.

Hope you've managed to redecorate the state — and I'm still waiting on shampoo news.

sylvia said...

Funnily enough, I recently came across a rather salubrious young woman talking about that very thing!

NSFW: http://www.asiacarrera.com/makeup/welcome.html

"Note - Try NOT to do that lip-smacking smoodge-together thing that all women like to do when they're done applying lipstick, because it musses the carefully applied highlighting effect, and makes it wear off quickly! "

So there you go, the porn star says it's that lip-smacking smoodge-together thing. Hope that helps.

Whirlochre said...

Smoodge! That may be the one!

Thanks Sylvia.

(disappears to try new word out in test sentence)

Yes — that seems to fit quite nicely.

Hoorah!

Kiersten said...

Sylvia saves the day!

McKoala said...

Aw, gee, I'm too late. But I was going to vote for flubbulate just to confuse things.

Whirlochre said...

Huh! Typical marsupial contrariness.

Kiersten said...

Okay, now I need your help...hop over to my blog, please. I have a hunch you'll have some good ideas...

Whirlochre said...

(vaults through cyberspace like Hermes in teleportation bootees...)

freddie said...

Smeared?

That implies use of the fingers, I guess.

Whirlochre said...

Either that or a hapless android factotum.

wendy said...

I'm branching out now from the world of EE. This whole blogging thing is great fun and ample distraction from work. There's no need to feed the children or walk the dog when one can blog glorious blog!

Anyway, here's mine:

The slip-n-slide of her pigment Picasso made the final stokes on a masterpiece lost for so very many years to ambivalence. Her beauty surprised her.

Thanks for the fun!

Whirlochre said...

Hi Wendy. Don't forget to check out the writing exercise in the latest post.