I know there is a fondness for games among many readers, so here is today's. What is your No. 1 word of the last decade? Might it be "divorce" or "Warcraft" or perhaps even "pants," "Rush," or "Miley"?
This question is especially timely today because the American Dialect Society, which studies the stumbling attempts of English to take hold in America, has declared that the one most important, significant, rousingly symbolic word of the last decade is "Google."
According to CBSNews.com, "Google" beat out such words of our bygone times as "blog." It even beat out "war on terror," which hardly seems like a word, but who am I to question the keepers of the spoken flame? (Press release containing the full list (PDF))
"It's hard to imagine life before we were Googling," American Dialect Society executive councilmember Ben Zimmer told CBSNews.com.
Might I take a moment to quibble with Zimmer's lexicon? I am sure you can most definitely imagine life before you dedicated your waking hours and, indeed, your name, to the Church of Searchboxology.
You might imagine that you were slightly less tied to your laptop. You might imagine that some organization on the Left Coast wasn't in possession of your date of birth, purchasing habits, messaging habits, massaging habits, and Lord knows what other intimate details of your inner and outer being.
It's just that you don't remember.
The sneaky part of this online world is not merely how it affects your everyday behavior. It's how it affects how you view (or don't view) your past.
You may be surprised to learn that the top word of 2009 was deemed to be "tweet." Yes, not "recession," nor "unemployed." I wonder if the voting took place online.