I'm trying to remember a word the Mac OS X Word of the Day screensaver showed me a few days ago. It's something along the lines of "using one language's words with another's syntax or grammar". This is not linguistic blending, or portmanteaux, or loan words, but more about the grammar and constructs of two languages mixed together. Can anyone think of a word that describes this kind of polyglot phenomenon?
Heh, here's a side-attack on the problem. How about looking for the word list used by the screensaver? I found a thread that says you can find it at:
/System/Library/Graphics/Quartz\ Composer\ Plug-Ins/WOTD.plugin/Contents/Resources/NOAD_wotd_list.txt
The full thread: https://apple.stackexchange.com/questions/95038
It's a technical approach, but I bet would be successful in tracking down the word you saw.
Sounds like a calque, a word-for-word translation from one language to another.
Could the word have been code-mixing or code-switching?
Wiki defines insertional code-switching as involving "the insertion of elements from one language into the morphosyntactic frame of the other" (quoting Donald Winford).
But this is unlikely to have been a word of the day.
What about this? From Wikipedia,
In linguistics, relexification is the mechanism of language change by which one language replaces much or all of its lexicon, including basic vocabulary, with that of another language, without drastic change to its grammar. It is principally used to describe pidgins, creoles, and mixed languages.
Relexification seems like the word you are looking for, plus it is also principally used to describe pidgins and creoles which concepts are among the closest to what you are looking for (as you said in the question's comment).