I’m delighted to note that there’s been an outbreak of spelling the word “whingeing” correctly in the press lately. It’s one of my favourite words, far greater than “moaning”, “whining”, or even that great Scots word “girning” – which is a far more aggravated and aggravating form of whingeing.
My delight stems from the fact that, twice in the past two years, I’ve submitted articles, one a review, the other a travel piece, which contained the word “whingeing”, only to suffer the indignity of having the ‘e’ removed from the published piece. Now, before you all start hauling out your Concise Oxfords, I’m well aware that the word “whinging” is deemed perfectly acceptable – however, the fact is, I submitted the word “whingeing”. Now, I’m sure subs are all perfectly nice people but…. OK, I won’t go there (again) for now.
But just look at the two together: “WHINGEING”; “WHINGING”.
“Whingeing”; it’s robust, you screw your face up to say it out loud, it pours lava-fashion through your lips, smothering the object of your contempt (probably a spoiled-brat, inefficient Celtic Tiger co-worker or one of those endless, conveyor-belt singer-songwriters that still haven’t gone away) with molten bile.
“Whinging”; it looks piss-weak, it looks like it rhymes with “singing” or “wringing” or “minging” – in short, it doesn’t do anything but drip.
So, I’m beside myself with happiness for any writer who opens up their paper and sees their well-chosen word spelled exactly the way they intended, perfectly in context, conveying their meaning precisely.
Me, I’m left with two pieces of work (one of which was, despite a bizarrely confused and therefore diluted byline credit, quite excellent) that I’d rather not show anyone, lest they think the spelling of “whinging” was my choice. It wasn’t; it never has been, it never will be.
*Sigh*. Right, that’s quite enough whingeing for now.