Saturday, January 2, 2010

Do you speak these banned English words from 2009?

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These banned words according to Lake Superio State University may be like so 2009, but the English language´s ability to adapt and mutate is fascinating for wordsmiths, professors, students, and speakers alike.

A brief analysis of the words reflects the times or zeitgeist - politics, economics, social media, and of course, romance.

The fledgling Obama Administration inspired many and a certain lexicon followed. For his stimulus plan to jump start the slow economy, we needed "shovel-ready" jobs. The term played off of FDR´s CCC (Civilian Conservation Corps) which replanted many trees and created known by economists as "make-work" jobs.

Also, an unprecedented number of "policy czars" were appointed by Mr. Obama to handle a variety of portfolios since I guess the bureaucracy and cabinet postings were not adequate. Czar is a curious term and not very democratic tracing its lineage back to "emperor" under Caesar. Those familiar with Russian history are already familiar with Czarina Catherine the last czar, Nicholas II, who was upended by Lenin´s revolution.

On the economy, how many times did we hear about "toxic assets" and "too big to fail?" Given the astronomical debt explosion during Mr. Obama´s first year in office, one may wonder if the US is too big to fail? China, a creditor of the US, worries.

Have you friended Elite English Services on my Facebook yet? :) Web 2.0 Social Media continues to be the rage online and of course it gets its own lingo in English. It´s antonym, "unfriend" is the Oxford Word of the Year 2009! Read my earlier post for more information. Therefore, should the word-banishers rethink at least this selection?

Finally, here is a note about "sexting." This banned 2009 word hit the headlines during the fall from grace of the world's number one professional golfer, Tiger Woods. Headlines blazed about his numerous rumored infidelities like "Report: Tiger Woods sexting Jaimee Grubbs...." His deluge of alleged texting and suggestive sex landed "sexting" squarely in the bullseye of the word-banishers.

For more banished words on the 35th annual List of Words Banished from the Queen's English for Mis-use, Over-use and General Uselessness, visit the website here.

p.s. Do you know of any so like 2009 words that were overused or misused? Please leave your comment. Thanks!
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