The Namerology blog picks the defining baby names of the last decade—“The names that were not just hugely popular from 2010-19, but vastly more popular than in decades past…and future. They’re flying high, yet as the ’10s draw to a close they’re already starting to decline from their dizzying popularity peaks.”
Chicago Tribune columnist Eric Zorn combed his newspaper’s archives for the first mentions of products, technologies, ideas, and terms that have become part of life since late 2009. His chronological list goes from A (Angry Birds) to Y (YOLO), and includes a bunch of words and brands you read about here first, including showrooming, FOMO, trigger warning, and antifa.
writer: what's the word i want here, is it trademarks? or patents?— alexandra j. roberts (@lexlanham) December 24, 2019
editor: yeah, i think it's both. just put both, can't go wrong. it's called the patent AND trademark office after all.
writer: you're so wise pic.twitter.com/NCojJAR5ze
From “reformed journalist” Tom Whitwell, “52 Things I Learned in 2019.” Here’s #12: “Drug names are changing: X and Z names (Prozac, Seroxat) are giving way to names ending in O or A (Natesto, Qsymia) which are more appealing to speakers of Romance languages in Europe and South America.”
A guide to the lingo of sustainable fashion, from “conscious” and “ethical” to “cruelty free” and “fair trade.”
Why do we say (ad nauseam) “’Tis the season”? And what’s a ’tis, anyway? Merriam-Webster patiently explains. (h/t Emily Brewster)
A seasonal sign in the window of Perkins Cleaners in my Oakland neighborhood
James Harbeck almost broke Twitter when he asked his followers to nominate words they love “irrationally much.” He compiled the results on his blog, Sesquiotica, and included one of my own favorites, petrichor.
Alas, Drew Magary no longer writes for Deadspin—he was among the writers and editors who exited that publication en masse in late October—but be of good cheer: His gleefully mordant Haters Guide to the Williams-Sonoma Catalog lives on in its new home on Vice. Mr. Magary does not spare the bile, or the profanity, but let’s be frank—when you’re considering with a pair of “Star Wars BB8 Ice Molds” ($21.95) or the “Jura Z8 Fully Automatic Espresso Machine” ($4,399.95), an F-bomb or three does not seem inappropriate in the slightest.
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