The thought process that ended with the decision to call my blog ‘Wibble’ is lost in the mists of time. But recreating that sequence of events isn’t all that hard…. I first encountered the word ‘wibble’ (some may maintain it’s ‘wubble’) in Blackadder Goes Forth, which, like all of Blackadder, is phlyarologically superb. As the Goons would probably put it: ‘perfectly enunciated rubbish’; a description that I like to think suits the assortment of words I’ve written here over the years.
But, more than this, the scene depicted above (which is from the final episode of ‘Goes Forth’ — Goodbyeee) features the following quote:
This is a crisis. A large crisis. In fact, if you’ve got a moment, it’s a twelve-storey crisis with a magnificent entrance hall, carpeting throughout, 24-hour porterage, and an enormous sign on the roof saying: ‘This Is a Large Crisis’.
… and that resonates with me due to the existential threats now facing our species and our planet, threats against which I have been known on occasion to rant, rail, and wail. For an example of such, you need only pick a random post from this blog; you’re quite likely to hit on one.
Google tells me that ‘wibble’ means:
speak or write, especially at great length.
Wiktionary, meanwhile, offers: “Meaningless or content-free chatter in a discussion; drivel, babble.”
I think that pretty much sums it up.
This circles back quite nicely to allow me to wax lyrical on my phondness of phlyarology. Phlyarology, a word of my own coinage (unlike ‘phlyarologist’ it’s not, as far as I’m aware, recognised in any dictionary) is the study of nonsense. Rowan Atkinson’s ‘Blackadder’ is the epitome of such, providing hours of fun and amusement for less than the cost of a used bus ticket. One doesn’t have to look far for other splendid examples; there’s a whole lot of nonsense on the Internet. Some of it even has the gall to wrap itself up in the guise of ‘fact’ (the merchants of doubt and purveyors of misinformation in general have a lot to answer for).
Back when I started this blog, I had no idea I would still be writing in it decades later (my first post was on 28Mar2007). Well, okay, ‘decades’ is a bit of an exaggeration: as I write I’ve only been at it for just over eleven years, but I do like to try to assume longevity when writing, so as not to have the passage of time mock the content unnecessarily.
I hope, Dear Reader, that you will find something of interest in these pages. Please do feel free to browse.
 The word ‘phlyarologist’ (as opposed to ‘phlyarology’) is in OED online:
Etymology: < ancient Greek ϕλύαρος [phlyaros?] silly talk, nonsense (probably < ϕλύειν to boil over, to babble Obs. nonce-wd. [i.e., it was coined for the instance and never used again, until the ‘net discovered it – 2650 gh]
A person who talks nonsense.
1867 Athenaeum 12 Oct. 459/1, I would not meddle with such a phlyarologist.