the words of 2010

(as listed by the new york times)

belieber: A fan of Justin Bieber, the Canadian pop singer who also spawned …

the Justin Bieber: A haircut also known as the flip and switch, the flow, or the twitch. Now driving parents crazy everywhere.

coffice: In South Korea, a coffee shop habitually used as an office by customers, who mooch its space, electricity, Wi-Fi and other resources. Presumably, they pay for the coffee.

halfalogue: Half of a conversation, like an overheard phone call. The term was coined in the research paper “Overheard Cell-Phone Conversations: When Less Speech is More Distracting” in the journal Psychological Science.

sofalize: A British marketing term created for people who prefer to stay home and communicate with others electronically.

mansplainer: A man compelled to explain or give an opinion about everything — especially to a woman. He speaks, often condescendingly, even if he doesn’t know what he’s talking about or even if it’s none of his business. Old term: a boor.

social graph: The structure of personal networks, who people know and how they know them, especially online. The term probably came from the internal lingo at Facebook, but it has spread widely among technology companies.

inception: Popularized by the movie “Inception,” the word expanded from its usual meaning and now refers to ideas planted in the dreams of other people.

double rainbow: A phrase from the hugely popular YouTube video by Paul Vasquez, featuring his breathless amazement at the sight of two rainbows at Yosemite National Park. It spawned parodies, television commercials, dance mixes, Auto-Tune versions, parties and Halloween costumes, and is now used to refer — ironically and not — to something amazing.

E.V.: An electric vehicle. While the term has been around for decades, there are now more cars like the Nissan Leaf and the Chevy Volt, which makes it more than an environmentalist’s pipeless dream.

vuvuzela: The South African plastic trumpet that invaded, like locusts, the World Cup matches in Johannesburg. Television viewers, as well as participants, couldn’t escape the buzzzzz.

Weird: Western, educated, industrialized, rich and democratic, an acronym and criticism of the typical subjects in studies by behavioral scientists. That is, they tend to be the easiest to recruit: undergraduates.

poutrage: False outrage, usually put on for personal, financial or political gain.

refudiate: Another Palinism, this time a blend of refute and repudiate. Now used with an eyebrow raised.

shellacking: President Obama’s preferred way to describe what happened to Democrats in the midterm elections. Some might call it a knock-down punch.


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