Archive for January, 2010

The year the aporkalypse afflicted Chimerica

By Sally Saville Hodge

I think we all have a love/hate relationship with buzzwords. On one hand, you can’t help admire the creativity that brings many of them about. On the other, many are just so apropos that they are used again and again and again…ad nauseum. Enough with “staycation,” please!

It’s that time of year when far-higher-profile pundits than I weigh in on the best/worst of buzzwords of the year just ended. Probably the most fun treatment can be seen in a New York Times contribution by Grant Barrett.

Barrett’s notable, by the way, as one of the founders of Wordnik, a site worth bookmarking if you appreciate words and how they change and/or become part of the vernacular.

Here are some of my favorite buzzwords and catchphrases that he identifies from 2009.

Aporkalypse: Undue worry in response to swine flu. Includes unnecessary acts like removing nonessential kisses from Mexican telenovelas and the mass slaughter of pigs in Egypt.

Chimerica: The intertwined economies of China and the United States, which together dominate the world economy. Popularized by Niall Ferguson in his book The Ascent of Money.

Government Motors: A nickname for General Motors, which is now majority owned by the U.S. federal government.

Mini-Madoff: A person who perpetrates a Ponzi scheme smaller than Bernie Madoff’s.

Vook: A digital book that includes some video in its text.

January 4, 2010 at 7:21 pm Leave a comment


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