Word Confusion: Bing versus Binge

Posted April 21, 2016 by Kathy Davie in Author Resources, Editing, Self-Editing, Word Confusions, Writing

I was reading along and enjoying the thought of the character enjoying her meal, shoveling it in…binging? Binging? Why would she be binging when she’s eating?

I just knew that was wrong. That the proper word was bingeing. And it turns out that I’m half right. The other half? Yep, the half of me that was wrong says binging is the alternative present participle.

So much for my great hoo-rah…*eye roll*…

Word Confusions…

…started as my way of dealing with a professional frustration with properly spelled words that were out of context in manuscripts I was editing as well as books I was reviewing. It evolved into a sharing of information with y’all. I’m hoping you’ll share with us words that have been a bête noir for you from either end. Consider sharing this Word Confusion with friends by tweeting it.

Bing Binge
Credit to: Apple Dictionary.com; Dictionary.com: bing and binge; Merriam-Webster: bing; The Free Dictionary.com: bing

Copper mining spoil heaps

Image courtesy of Crispin Purdye [CC BY-SA 2.0], via Wikimedia Commons

Copper mining bings. South Caradon Mine, 1978.

Pie-eating contest, Seattle, Washington, 2003.

Image by Seattle Municipal Archives from Seattle, WA (Pie-eating contest, 2003 Uploaded by Jmabel) [CC BY 2.0], via Wikimedia Commons

Looks like binge eating to me *grin*!

Part of Grammar:
Exclamation 1; Noun 2, 3, 4, 5; Verb, intransitive 6

Plural for the noun and third person present verb: bings
Past tense or past participle: binged
Gerund or present participle: binging

[Informal] Noun; Verb, intransitive

Plural for the noun and third person present verb: binges
Past tense or past participle: binged
Gerund or present participle: binging, bingeing

Indicating a sudden action or event

Used to suggest a sharp ringing sound

[Chiefly Scottish] A heap, especially of metallic ore or of waste from a mine

[Dialectal, British] A heap or pile for storage

  • A storage bin

Proper Noun:
Proper name

A variety of dark red or blackish sweet cherry 3

A search engine on the Internet

A packet of narcotics 4

[Slang] A prison cell used for solitary confinement 5

Verb, intransitive:
[Obsolete] To go 6

To search for something on the Internet using Bing

A short period devoted to indulging in an activity to excess, especially drinking alcohol or eating

Verb, intransitive:
Indulge in an activity, especially eating, to excess

To carouse

To consume

Bing! They’ve hit you with something.

There are bings of old slag a few miles outside of town.

That’s some bing of potatoes you’ve got.

Proper Noun:
Bing Crosby was an amazing singer.

Bing is not my preferred search engine.

Cherry season is coming up, and I am so looking forward to a bowl full of Bing cherries.

Verb, intransitive:
Bing off to your mum’s.

I’ll bing it.

He’s binging the term now.

He went on a binge and was in no shape to drive.

Geez, she’s off on another spending binge.

She’s a binge eater, especially with the chocolate.

Verb, intransitive:
Some dieters say they cannot help bingeing on chocolate.

She keeps on bingeing and vomiting every day.

Noun: binger, binging
History of the Word:
1 Late 19th century and originally imitative dialect in the sense of sudden bang.

2 Early 16th century from the Old Norse bingr meaning heap.

3 1920-25, Americanism.

4 1920s, bindle.

5 1950s, prison, the hole.

6 1560-70, origin uncertain.

Early 19th century is of unknown origin.

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C’mon, get it out of your system, bitch, whine, moan…which words are your pet peeves?