Thought for the Day

It’s the second day of the year that we commonly pronounce as Two Thousand Nine. I wonder when we’ll be able to stop saying Two Thousand X and start saying Twenty X without sounding like a stranger from another decade. Don’t believe me? Say Twenty Oh Nine to somebody and tell me what sort of strange looks you get.

Will next year be the turning point? Maybe, but I don’t think so. Twenty Ten doesn’t quite have a good ring to itself. It sounds rather like a made-up word that somebody’s trying to insert into the language, like truthiness.

I suspect that 2011 will be the year we hear the adoption of the Twenty notation, as Two Thousand And Eleven is quite a mouthful at seven syllables. (Yes, the "and" is not proper, but many people do say it that way.) Twenty Eleven is only five syllables long. Think of all the time that will be saved by eliminating the other two syllables.

Of course, by that logic, we should all start saying Twenty Ten now, since it’s only three syllables long, as opposed to Two Thousand And Ten, which is five syllables long.

Either way, I wonder if we will then start using the Twenty notation retroactively? As in, "I remember back in Twenty Oh Nine I posted that very question to my blog. What? Well, a blog was a sort of a place on the Web where one would post messages and wait for people to comment. What? Well, ‘Web’ was what we called the hypertext part of the Internet back then. No, we didn’t have virtual reality yet. All we had were MMORPGs, and we liked it. We had to sit in one place and look straight ahead to play, and we liked it. And we had to pay money for the privilege, and we liked it. Back in Twenty Oh Nine… heh heh…Two Thousand Nine… *snore* *snore*"

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4 thoughts on “Thought for the Day”

  1. Actually, I think proper parlance for old farts referring back to “single digit” years is to change the zero to “aught.” So that in the future, referring back to this year will require some head and butt-scratching, a far-away look, a little bit of toothless gumming and then a wheezy: “Weeelll, back in aught-nine, we used to PAY for access to the internet, and we liked it.” I’m sure that will be met with the same sort of interest and enthusiasm we reserved for stories of walking ten miles to school in the snow with no shoes, and what a privilege that was.

  2. I was thinking along much the same lines as TitanKT. Eh-yup, ‘way back in ought 9, li’l fella, we was carrying iPhone, iPod, car keys, all sep’rate. Clunky mess, I telz ya.
    However, twenty ten sounds fine to me, liking the alliteration, and I think that’s what we’ll call it.

  3. I think it’s kind of like 911. You say “Nine one one” or “Nine eleven”. And look at the people who say it different from you with a slight sneer because of COURSE they’re wrong.
    I actually like the Twenty Ten thing, I’m going to be proactive with it.

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