Friday January 15, 2010: Awesome.

What word now, will we use to replace the word “awesome?”  I got thinking about this in the aftermath of the earthquake in Haiti.  As the horrible news pours in, that word keeps coming back to me.  As in the awesome power of the forces of nature. Or the awesome magnitude of the destruction.   “Awesome” used to mean something that inspired, well, awe:  a magnificent sunset… the power of a volcano… the sight of a Saturn IV launch… the grandeur and vastness of the universe.  It did not, necessarily, mean something that was good.

But how can we use the word awesome after we have heard a t-shirt described as awesome?   What word can take its place?

While I’m thinking about it, the word “horrific” keeps coming up in coverage of the disaster.  What was wrong with the perfectly good word “horrible?”   And “extreme.”   It jumped the shark when it was first employed to describe sports in which crazy people started skiing down the sides of cliffs.  And not long ago, I found in a grocery store Crest Herbal Extreme toothpaste.  Another perfectly good word, down the tubes.

By the way, yesterday I posted a list of organizations which are rushing emergency aid to Haiti.  If you want to see it,  just click here.

Today’s Fun Stuff

  • Here’s a quintessential ’70s TV commercial.  It sums up the era quite well, I think.
  • In South Carolina you don’t need a boat in order to go waterskiing.  From this video, though, I think a couple of kegs of beer might be involved:

Have a great weekend!  –Steve


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