Meaning Less

Some words and phrases befuddle me. Those that take old words and give them new meaning, in particular. Here’s a few of them:

1. Haters. This word has emerged from a verb, a not-so-nice verb, “hate.” I’ve come across it among people defending themselves, as in “Okay, bring on all the haters. I’m ready.” It’s as if there is a conspiracy among humankind to attack. Who comprises this species?

2. Trending. In the not distance past, a trend was spotted because numerous occurrences occurred over a period of time, as in a trend toward self-reliance. I’ve come across trending, which is a gerund by the way and I strongly urge you to suspect gerunds, generally. So, trending has become a big word for a relatively sudden eruption of attention on twitter, which, let’s face it, does not rate high on rubrics or anything resembling reliable data. I’m not saying that’s bad. But why call emotional reaction “trending?”

3. Disrespecting. Another gerund here for the process of not showing respect, as in “She/He/They/YOU disrespected me.” Now this one shows promise IF speakers surrounded the word with some specificity; but when I’ve heard it, it is so vague. Standing alone “disrespected” is a catchall word for not doing what I want, not seeing what I feel, not understanding what I meant, not getting my approval. There’s just way to much “I” in it.

About Mrs. Fitz

Hello! I'm Michele Fitzpatrick, a Chicago writer. Like our town, a work in progress. As a journalist, teacher and writing coach I think all of us live our stories and sharing them creates moments that remind us we're connected. And that is enough.
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