I had the pleasure of being a guest of Mr. and Mrs. Bill Usrey on the evening of July the Fourth. This, as you well know, was an evening with a one-hour and 20-minute fireworks display over the cove next to his condominium. As darkness fell the scene of approximately 300 watercraft of various sizes lighted up appeared to be an armada stationed for some unknown of known event.
When Neil Armstrong landed on the moon I coined a word to describe that tremendous feat. Several local newspapers and TV stations made use of the word in their editorial and news programs. I feel that unbelevenbelapittastic (un-be-lev-en-bel-a-pit-tas-tic) is suitable to describe the combination of the generous fireworks display by Mr. and Mrs. Usrey, and the grand armada.
Here is how the word came about: from “un”, plus early Middle English “beleven”, plus the French “bi” to “be,” then “belevenable, to form the modern word unbelievable in 1548; plus “bel” from French “bellus” to form the modern word beautiful in 1526: plus “a” plus “pitt” from French pittore’ to form the modern word picturesque in 1703: plus “astic.”
His definition: “A beautiful or spectacular view, scene or event beyond the expression of simple words and gestures which by its sheer magnificence approaches existence beyond man’s imagination and vocabulary, and to be the subject of an effective picture possessing pleasing and interesting quality of form and color.”
Oh, one last thought, the abbreviated from is “belapittastic” (bel-a-pit-tas-tic).
George D.N. Coletti