What would be awesome is if I never hear the word awesome again in the way it has now come to be used. The Grand Canyon is awesome. The fact that there is a comet somewhere out in the vast icy reaches of space traveling at one million four hundred and forty thousand miles an hour is awesome. But “yes thank you, I will have fries with my cheeseburger” is not, I repeat, not “awesome.”
The unabridged edition of the Random House Dictionary of the English Language lists the first definition of awe as; “an overwhelming feeling of reverence, admiration, fear etc., produced by that which is grand, sublime, extremely powerful, or the like: in awe of God; in awe of authority.” The last time I had a side of fries they were not “awesome”, they were frozen.
Perhaps this is me just getting old, but I am a bit concerned that many words in our beautiful and expressive language have become utterly devalued as well as misused. If one’s response of “paper” to the question “paper or plastic?” elicits an “awesome”, what word might we then possibly utter in response to Continue reading