WORDS TO THE WISE
Popular phrases come and go, enter public parlance, then fade from sound. When they’re hot, they’re everywhere; when they’re gone, you’d best drop them from your vocabulary or risk being dated.
Consider the conversations you’ve had in recent years and recall how abundant were such words and phrases as “hang out”, hook-up”, “party”, “hey”, “geek”, “It’s all good”, “You know”, and “whatever”. Then there was “think outside the box”, “win, win”, “at the end of the day”, “it’s not rocket science,” “awesome”, etc. When in favor they seem indispensable.
One word, not always cited has strong claims to inclusion in this discussion. It has enjoyed several years of almost universal usage in the United States. In darwinian -like fashion, it has bested most competitors, has come to dominate the linguistic landscape. Have you guessed it by now? ABSOLUTELY.
Pay attention, and on a given day, the word will be sprinkled among many a conversation. “Do you expect to join us on Saturday?” “Absolutely”. “Can you help me move this couch?” “Absolutely”. The word is, after all, strong, decisive and unambiguous, most welcome in a world too often lacking in clarity and conviction.
Still, there once was a time when linguistic diversity prevailed here, when people had choices. Responses could have included “of course”, “certainly”, “definitely”, “yes”, “sure thing”, “no problem”, “for sure”, “unquestionably”, but all are currently in retreat, no longer in contention. Can the current people’s choice continue to remain on top? Absolutely.