Everything important about this decade in 482 words

Published 2:39 pm Tuesday, December 22, 2009

One of the many disadvantages to being young is the complete lack of perspective. For example, I have no idea whether we just went through the best decade ever, or the worst. The only decade I can compare this one to is the nineties, and for the better part of them, I had no idea what was going on.

Our decade began on a dour note September 11th and ended on a hopeful one Barrack Obamas election to the Presidency. In between those two incidents, a lot of stuff happened: we had a war, the Panthers almost won the Super Bowl, Michael Jackson died, Tom Cruise went crazy, Polk County High School got a school farmif I continued to spout off at the mouth with random events that happened this decade, this column would quickly sink into the realm the boring. Additionally, I lack the wisdom and perspective to try to sum up this decade and concisely say what we learned from it.

Instead, Ill concentrate on linguistics. When the ball dropped in at 12:01 a.m., January 1st, 2000, I was extremely concerned. Thats not to say that ten-year-old Drew was worried about the worlds computers exploding because of the Y2K bug, or worried that the dot-com bubble would soon burst; I was not concerned with such trivial matters. I was worried about what we were to call the decade to come.

Pretty much, every decade in recent history has had a nice name to accompany it. There were the Seventies. The Eighties. The Nineties. And then what? The 2000s? We cant just call them that, though. If people were to refer to this decade as the 2000s as the millennium wore on, we would get progressively more confused. Even though right now, the 2000s only refers to about nine years, eventually itll refer to a thousand years worth of stuff. People will never know what anyones talking about 900 years from now if we simply refer to the 2000s as such. We owe it to posterity to come up with a better name.

What about the Zeroes? The problem with this one is that it makes the people of this decade seem like losers a bunch of zeroes, if you will. As someone whose formative years were mainly housed within this decade, I refuse to stand by that name.

A few people have floated the idea of calling this decade the Aughts, which I like. I think in addition to denoting a bunch of zeroes without sounding insulting about it, the terms homonym ought implies an optimism for the years going forward. As in: Okay. The Aughts have ended. Some things have turned out well for us. Some things have not. The Panthers need a new quarterback. We see the situation that has been laid out before us. We know what we ought to do. So lets get to it.~ Modern Age written by Drew Millard