Speaking of words of the year, it might interest you to know that Van Dale en Onze Taal selected ‘bokitoproof’ as the Dutch word of the year (one word, no hyphen).
Earlier this year a gorilla, called Bokito, escaped from his cage in the Rotterdam zoo, badly injuring a woman and some other visitors. It was the hottest news item for a couple of weeks especially when it became clear that the woman in question had been visiting the zoo every week just to ‘bond’ with the gorilla. Experts explained that this ‘bonding’ was probably regarded as a taunt by Bokito and some pointed out that there were some clear sexual aspects about it too.
There is a video on Youtube showing the woman working on her special relationship with the animal.
Zoos in Holland were obliged to reconsider the safety of the housing of their wild animals and Rotterdam zoo had to widen the ditch that separates the gorillas from the visitors to make it ‘bokitoproof’. By extension, the word can also mean ‘able to withstand vandalism’.
Finally, the fact that there was a time when perfectly good Dutch ‘-bestendig’ served the same purpose for which we now seem to need English ‘-proof’ does bother me, but hey, that may be just my hang-up.