The Pun Dictionary

The Washington Post recently published a contest for readers in which they were asked to supply alternate meanings for various words. Here are some of the winning entries, along with other suggestions trawled from various sources. If you have any ideas you would like included, please e-mail me here, and I will add the best ones (with full credit to you of course!)

Abdicate To give up all hope of ever having a flat stomach


Absentee A missing golf peg


Abundance Big party held in a bakery

Aiken Drum

Actor A ham that can't be cured

Leopold Fechtner

Adduce The lowest card in the deck

Leopold Fechtner

Adventure A daring new marketing campaign

Lars Hanson

Alarms What an octopus is

Leopold Fechtner

Alimony Something which enables a woman to profit by her mistakes

Leopold Fechtner

Analysis A rectal examination

Kevin Hale

Appear Something you fish from

Leopold Fechtner

Artery The study of paintings


Arachnoleptic fit The frantic dance performed just after you've walked through a spider's web


Asphalt A rectal problem


Avoidable What a bullfighter tries to do


Axiom What one does to trees that are in the way

Pierre Abbat

Bacteria Rear entrance to a cafeteria


Balderdash A rapidly receding hairline


Ball-race A tom-cat with a ten-yard start on the vet


Baloney Where some hemlines fall


Barbed Wire An insulting telegram

Merlyn Baby

Barium What doctors due when patients die


Benign What you be after you be eight


Bernadette The act of setting light to your credit card statement


Bloodless Coup An anæmic pigeon

Kevin Hale

Bouffant A surprising typeface

Kevin Hale

Brassiere A device to bring out a girl's best points

Henny Youngman

Budget An attempt to live below your yearnings

Aiken Drum

Burglarize What a crook sees with


Bustard A very rude bus driver


Cabbage Your taxi fare

Kevin Hale

Caesarean Section An area of Rome


Campanology Intense study

Kevin Hale

Cannibal Someone who is fed up with people

John Nunley

Carcase A garage

Kevin Hale

Carcinoma A valley in Southern California, notable for its heavy smog


Carrot Vehicle decay

Lewis Gerolemou

Cartoonist What you call a mechanic


Catscan Searching for kitty


Cauterize Made eye contact with her


Cellphone Means of communication for prisoners

Kevin Hale

Circumvent The opening in the front of boxer shorts


City One who is sat on

Richard Lederer

Cockpit A vagina

Richard Lederer

Cock au Vin Classy oral sex

Lars Hanson

Codpieces Fish fingers

John M

Coffee A person who is coughed upon


Colic Acute stomach ache affecting sheep dogs

Kevin Hale

Coma A punctuation mark


Consensus An agreement to falsify population statistics

Kevin Hale

Contact To swindle someone with diplomacy

Kevin Hale

Control A short, ugly inmate


Convince To swindle someone named Vincent

Kevin Hale

Counterfeiters Workers who put together kitchen cabinets


Crestfallen How you feel when you drop the toothpaste


Dark Ages Knight time

PUNAmerican Newsletter

Darwinism Survival of the foetus

Richard Lederer

Decafalon The gruelling event of getting through the day consuming only things that a re good for you


Decimated How you feel after leaving an orgy with 10 people

Kevin Hale

Delight What a refrigerator does when you close the door


Diarrhœa A journal listing your stomach upsets

Kevin Hale

Diary A book in which to list funeral dates

Kevin Hale

Dibber A boy scout

Kevin Hale

Dickens A 1960s sex party

Andy Jackson

Dilate To live for a long time


Dildo A meat substitute

Richard Lederer

Diplomacy Lying in state

Oliver Herford

Diptheria Someone who expounds about slumps in profit

Kevin Hale

Diversion Translation into Welsh

John M

Drawback Problem associated with being un-circumsized

Kevin Hale

Drive-in Movie Wall to wall car petting

M. Rose Pierce

Dyspepsia Stomach ache from drinking too much cola

Kevin Hale

Eclipse What an English barber does for a living


Enema Not a friend


Ennoculation Vaccination against the Black Death

Kevin Hale

Ergo She went

Kevin Hale

Esplanade To attempt an explanation while drunk


Executive A hangman

Kevin Hale

Eyebrows What I do when I go shopping


Eyedropper A clumsy ophthalmologist


Fascination A preoccupation with zippers, buttons, and closures of every kind

Tiff Wimberly

Fallacy A false belief that your penis is larger than it really is

Kevin Hale

Fester Quicker than someone else


Fibula A small lie


Fiefdom A prophylactic for bananas

Kevin Hale

Filling Station A dental surgery

Kevin Hale

Fireplace An office used for discharging people

Helen Hoke

Flabbergasted Appalled at how much weight you have gained


Flail The opposite of slucceed


Flatulence The emergency vehicle that picks you up after you are run over by a steamroller


Fly Paper An Air Mail Letter

Stan Kegel

Foreclose Why teenagers go to a fashion shop


Foreclosure A fate worse that debt

Lee Daniel Quinn

Forfeit What most animals stand on

Leopold Fechtner

Forger A person who writes things you can't bank on

Lee Daniel Quinn

Furlong Angora cat hair

Richard Lederer

Gargoyle An olive-flavoured mouthwash


Genealogy The study of the wish-granting residents of brass lamps

Tiff Wimberly

Genital A Non-Jew


Gentry Way in to the men's toilets

Kevin Hale

Gold Digger A gal who likes to go buy-buy

Helen Hoke

Good-for-nothing An obedient child that doesn't get any pocket money

Lee Daniel Quinn

Gullible An easily-duped sea bird

Kevin Hale

Gumbo What John Derek does after he takes out his teeth at night


Handkerchief Cold storage

John Nunley

Hangnail Where you put your coat


Hatchet What a hen does to an egg

Leopold Fechtner

Hermit What she catches a baseball with


Heroes What a boy does on the lake when his outboard motor won't run

Pierre Abbat

Hoarding Advertising poster for prostitutes

Kevin Hale

Housefly A zipper through which you enter and leave a house


Housewife A gadget you screw on the bed, and it cooks and cleans for you

Don Thorn

Hullabaloo Noisy lavatory

John M

Hunger What the posse did to the lady rustler

Art. Moger

Hypochondriac A guy who won't let well enough alone


Impotent Distinguished, well known


Innuendo An Italian suppository


Intermittent A boy scout's request for you to join him under canvas

Kevin Hale

Interruption A pause during a funeral

Kevin Hale

Isolate Delay because of frozen roads

Ray Hand

Jigsaw Injury caused through Irish dancing

Kevin Hale

Kidnap When a young person gets extra sleep

Jay Christie

Knapsack Sleeping bag

John M

Labour pain Industrial injury


Lactose What you say when someone has no feet


Lagoon A French idiot


Lay-By A place to pull off the road for safe sex?

Kevin Hale

Locomotive Crazy reason

Brandy Brandson

Logarithm A group of singing Lumberjacks

Richard Lederer

Logjam Constipation!

Kevin Hale

Lymph To walk with a lisp


Marionettes The residents of Washington who have been jerked around by the mayor


Marsupial Mother's conger potage

Kevin Hale

Medical staff A doctor's cane


Medieval Harold Shipman

John M

Melancholy Very sad mixed vegetables Kevin Hale
Meteor A rock star

Ken Johns

Mirage A good place to keep an imaginary car

Ken Johns

Misery A collection of misers

Leo Roston

Misty How golfers create divots


Monkeys What they use to unlock doors in a monastery

Gill Krebs

Morbid A higher offer than my bid


Mosquito A fly that lives in Muslim churches

Kevin Hale

Mousetrap A device used by mice to attract cheese


Negligent A condition in which you absentmindedly answer the door in your nightie


Nephophilia A morbid fear of German cooking appliances

Kevin Hale

Nitrates Cheaper than day rates


Node Was aware of


Novelty A library of novels

Leo Roston

Oar A cockney prostitute

Richard Lederer

Octopus A cat that has already used up one of his lives


Orgasm Being overcome with pleasure at a rowing event

Kevin Hale

Outpatient A person who has fainted in hospital


Overcharged When you've paid too much for a battery

Kevin Hale

Overnight Bag Complimentary 'lady-of-the-night' provided in a hotel

Kevin Hale

Ovulate "Oh no! I think I'm pregnant!"

Kevin Hale

Oyster A person who sprinkles his conversation with Yiddish expressions


Pantry A collection of pants

Leo Roston

Paradox A quandary over which of the two physicians to choose

Kevin Hale

Paraphrase GERONIMO!!!

Kevin Hale

Parasites What you see from the top of the Eiffel Tower


Parsnip Dad's little drink

Lewis Gerolemou

Pastoral Scene What the Reverend goes through when he comes home late


Past tense When you used to be nervous

Leo Roston

Penis The only thing that a woman hopes she will find hard to handle

Richard Lederer

Perspire How church builders calculate their construction costs

Ray Hand

Pharmacist A helper on the farm


Polarize What penguins see with


Popcorn Serial father

Lewis Gerolemou

Pregnancy The shape of things to come

M. Rose Pierce

Program Favouring metric weights over British

Kirk Russell

Propaganda To have a good look

Kevin Hale

Protractor In favour of using mechanical farm machinery

Richard Lederer

Psalm Less than many but more than none

Brandi Brandon

Pumpkin To interrogate a member of your family

Andy Jackson

Quartet A little larger than a pint


Quintessential Something you have to do five times

David Reihmer

Ragamuffin Something to eat at a Ravi Shankar concert

Ray Hand

Rectitude The formal, dignified demeanour assumed by a proctologist immediately before he examines you


Relief What trees do in the spring


Remember To recall that you must renew your allegiance to a club

Kevin Hale

Rent Boy The consequences of having anal sex with a male prostitute who's too tight

Kevin Hale

Repercussions The consequences of playing the drums

Kevin Hale

Romantic Parasites infesting some Italian males

Gary Hallock

Rubberneck What you do to relax your wife


Rubicon Being seen off over the cost of a Cockney curry

Kevin Hale

Sandwich Beach hag

Lewis Gerolemou

Sarcasm Quip lash

The Pun Page

Seamstress Describes 250 pounds in a size six


Selfish The way the owner of a seafood store feels after a days' work


Semantics Pranks conducted by young men studying for the priesthood, including such things as gluing the pages of the priest's prayer book together just before vespers


Sentimental Driving Italians crazy

Robert McGuigan

Sherbet A tip on a horse race or sporting event

Art. Moger

Sex Education Sermon on the mount

Don Thorn

Subdued Like, a guy, like, works on one of those, like, submarines, man


Successfully To completely suck up vile fluids

Keith Jackson

Sudafed Brought litigation against a government official


Suede How you feel when you get off a boat

Robert McGuigan

Suffocation Being made to live in Ipswich

Kevin Hale

Sycophant I much prefer Dec

Andy Jackson

Synagogue The wide-eyed look when watching a blue movie for the first time

Kevin Hale

Tennis Five plus five

Kirk Miller

Tentative Doubtful about going camping

Kevin Hale

Testicle A humorous question on an exam


Transplantation Moving a farm

Keith Martin

Triplet Renting out your apartment while you're on holiday

Robert E Lewis

Tripod Three-legged device for carrying offal

Kevin Hale

Tycoon Businessman who made his millions selling cravats

Kevin Hale

Unkempt Rough looking state of 'Eastenders' after Grant Mitchell leaves

Kevin Hale

Trolley Bus Mobile underwear shop

Kevin Hale

Unstable Take the horse out of the barn

Brandi Brandon

Violin A bad hotel

Richard Lederer

Walnuts People who are crazy about walls

Gill Krebs

Wanderlust A promiscuous hiker

Andy Jackson

Willy-nilly Impotent


Wishy-washy Someone who daydreams in the bath tub

Mike Bull

Worship Used to be a boat

Kevin Hale

Testiculate To wave your arms around wildly while talking bollocks


The Washington Post's Style Invitational also asked readers to take any word or phrase from the dictionary, alter it by adding, subtracting or changing one letter, and supply a new definition. Here are some recent winners, along with some of my suggestions. If you have any ideas you would like included, please e-mail me here, and I will add the best ones (with full credit to you of course!)

Acme A generic skin disease


Adulatery Cheating on your wife with a much younger woman who holds you in awe


Barrycade A human shield consisting entirely of scousers


Beelzebug Satan in the form of a mosquito that gets into your bedroom at 3 in the morning and cannot be cast out


Blaséball player A certain kind of athlete who makes two million dollars a year and still makes fans pay to get his autograph


Bozone The substance surrounding stupid people that stops bright ideas from penetrating. The bozone layer, unfortunately, shows little sign of breaking down in the near future


Canoedling Kissing and cuddling in a kayak

Kevin Hale

Cashtration The act of buying a house, which renders the subject financially impotent for an indefinite period


Caterpallor The colour you turn after finding half a grub in the fruit you're eating


Circuscision The operation required to become a clown

Kevin Hale

Cunnilingut Stimulation of the female organs by a large belly

Bruce Michel

Darthritis A fatal condition causing audible respiratory problems, split-actor disorder, and eventual electrocution


Deflon The substance that causes you to become hard of hearing after being hit with a frying pan

Kevin Hale

Deifenestration To throw all talk of God out the window


Dimages Compensation awarded to people for accidents caused by their own stupidity


Doltergeist A spirit that decides to haunt somewhere really stupid, like your septic tank


Dopeler effect The tendency of stupid ideas to seem smarter when they come at you rapidly


Emasculathe The tool used for castration


Eunouch The pain of castration


Fantastick Very effective adhesive


Farticulation Well pronounced flatulence


Foreploy Any misrepresentation about yourself for the purpose of obtaining sex


Fortissimoe The musical moment produced when someone serially slaps the faces of the first-violin section


Fortune Kookie Anyone who actually believes that something written on a piece of paper stuffed into a curled wafer in a Chinese restaurant will actually come true


Gear lobe Any human ear that is pierced more than four times


Genitaliar An image-enhancing object that can be carried in a man's front pocket


Giraffiti Vandalism spray painted very high


Glibido All talk and no action


Gnativity Christmas play performed by small insects

Kevin Hale

Grand Copera Any T.V. offering that is a high-drama police show in a serial format


Guillozine Trade magazine for executioners


Halogem A precious stone, usually a diamond, that is so large that it blinds anyone within a two mile radius with its reflected light


Handicarp The condition under which employees must work when they have a boss that constantly holds meetings to find out what's taking everyone so long to complete a project


Hilaryous Adjective describing any hopes that a former First Lady can successfully run for President if it means that the ex-President will be back in the White House in ANY capacity


Hindkerchief Really expensive toilet paper; Toilet paper at Buckingham Palace


Hipatitis Terminal coolness


Hozone A place with a comedy atmosphere

Kevin Hale

Ignoranus A person who is both stupid and an asshole


Imargination The fantasy of being left on the edge

Kevin Hale

Inportune Forcing others to listen to your out-of-tune singing

Bruce Michel

Impotience The state of eager anticipation felt by men awaiting their Viagra prescription


Innoculate To take coffee intravenously


Insect Rebellent Any spray, citronella candle, bug bomb, pheromone trap or electric zapper that makes hornets madder than they were before


Intaxication Euphoria at getting a refund from the Inland Revenue, which lasts until you realise it was your money to start with


Jaztec A modern interior design in which ancient artifacts and style are placed among aluminum tubing-based furniture in an attempt to look stylish


Karmageddon It's like, when everybody is sending off all those really bad vibes, right? And then, like, the Earth explodes and it's like a serious bummer


Lullabuy The music from the sort of advert which sends you to sleep

Kevin Hale

Luperiority A classier state of madness


Malloween costume Soft, spongy white edible clothes worn at the end of October

Kevin Hale

Manufracture To produce items which break after little use


Nazigator A fanatical pilot's assistant

Kevin Hale

Newtspaper Ken Livingstone's favourite periodical

Kevin Hale

Orbituary Death announcement for a satellite

Bruce Michel

Osteopornosis A degenerate disease


Pasteal The color that appears on all your pages when your printer runs out of "yellow" and "magenta"


Phonetick The involuntary rolling of the eyes when one receives a call during dinner


Pigamist A person with more than one porcine spouse

Kevin Hale

Purrgatory Where cats go when they die

James D. Ertner

Reintarnation Coming back to life as a hillbilly


Repoduction The means by which peas self-generate their species

Kevin Hale

Residental Area The place on your dentures that is covered with yucky gooey stuff you have to scrape off when they don't stick anymore before you can put more gooey stuff on them so they will stick again


Russian Orthodixy Certain sect of Christian beliefs found in the Russian state of Georgia


Sandalize To cause a stir/outrage with consistently unfashionable footwear


Sarchasm The gulf between the author of sarcastic wit and the reader who doesn't get it


Simmer Frame A support for holding saucepans

Kevin Hale

Spamphlet A thick section included in the centre pages of a magazine designed to look like an legitimate article with the words, "Special Advertising Section" written on the top in microscopic letters


Telegant Looking good on TV


Testiculate To point furiously at a man's genitalia


Traumatizer A particularly disturbed can of soft drink


Urinal The one place where all men are peers

Dan and Paula

Vaseball A game of catch played by children in the living room


Wangst Post-masturbatory guilt


Writer's tramp A companion who practices poetic licentiousness


Xenaphobic Fear of women wearing tight black leather


X-Failes Any popular T.V. show that is turned into a movie


A New York paper recently asked readers to take foreign phrases, alter it by adding, subtracting or changing one letter, and supply a new definition. Here are some entries, along with some of my suggestions. If you have any ideas you would like included, please e-mail me here, and I will add the best ones (with full credit to you of course!)

Ad Hock Special poster for German wine

Kevin Hale

Aloha Oy Love; greetings; farewell; from such a pain you should never know


Altar Ego A stand-in vicar

Kevin Hale

Anno Domino A very long game of dominos

Kevin Hale

Après Moe Le Déluge Larry and Curly got wet


Arse gratia artis Buggery as an art form

Bruce Michel

Bootique Shoe shop

Kevin Hale

Çà Va Sans Dirt And that's not gossip


Cogito Eggo Sum I think; therefore I am a waffle


Entente Cordial To agree on which flavour soft drink to have

Kevin Hale

Faux Par To lose a golf ball

Kevin Hale

Felix Navidad Our cat has a boat


Harlez-Vous Français? Can you ride a French motorcycle?


Haste Cuisine Fast French food


Ich Bit Ein Berliner He deserved it


Ich Liebe Rich I'm really crazy about having dough


Idios Amigos We're wild and crazy guys!


Le Roi Est Mort. Jive Le Roi! The king is dead. No kidding!


L'État, C'Est Moo I'm bossy around here


Mal De Mere To be sick of one's mother

Kevin Hale

Merci Rien Thanks for nothin'!


Monage A Trois I am three years old


Nil Desperandum Don't worry about the football scores

Kevin Hale

Porte-Kochere Sacramental wine


Posh Mortem Death styles of the rich and famous


Pro Bozo Publico Support your local clown


Que Sera Serf Life is feudal


Quip Pro Quo A fast retort


Réspondez S'Il Vous Plaid Honk if you're Scottish


Roger Mortis A necrophiliac

Kevin Hale

Taterfamilias The head of the Potato Head family


Tigor Mortis The cat is dead

Kevin Hale

Veni, Vidi, Velcro I came, I saw, I stuck around


Veni, Vidi, Vice I came, I saw, I partied


Veni, VIPi, Vici I came, I'm a very important person, I conquered


Visa La France Don't leave your chateau without it


Zitgeist The Clearasil doesn't quite cover it up


Have a look at the New Definitions page in my I'm Sorry I Haven't A Clue web site (