What exactly does "awesome" mean anyway?

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dagenham
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What exactly does "awesome" mean anyway?

Post by dagenham » Sat Jun 14, 2014 6:09 pm

"And does it really matter what “words” we use?" - this quote is from freesocrates in the "My partner" thread...

Hey, after 6 decades as a language-speaking mammal I fully realize that popular words come and go...that's the way it should be - morphing and reflecting the ch-ch-changing times...

But I must say the linguistic monopoly that "awesome" has currently is truly...well...awesome. There was a day, maybe in early 1998, when you could only say awesome if describing the following:

a) The Grand Canyon
b) The Moon landing
c) The Taj Mahal
d) Angkor Wat

And now....people, of all ages which in itself alone is perplexing since slang is always generational in nature, rarely use any other adjectives. A glass of water can be called "awesome". I used to like that word and now I want to pummel those lazy inarticulate speakers who overuse it. There other adjectives one can use after all. It's driving me mad.

What to do? Move to another country and stop speaking English you say? But still the tourist come and say that word constantly - even those who aren't native English speakers. Plug my ears? That will work and probably nothing short of that...the wretched human condition of today's world and now we even have global warming (allegedly)! What's the point of going on? Of waking up tomorrow?
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Re: What exactly does "awesome" mean anyway?

Post by picaroon » Sat Jun 14, 2014 6:20 pm

From the context I see it used in - online reviews of pizzas etc. - I've concluded US English 'awesome' = British English 'awful.'

Technically it refers to something bigger than and incomprehensible to the user. No surprise that they use it a lot then.
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dagenham
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Re: What exactly does "awesome" mean anyway?

Post by dagenham » Sat Jun 14, 2014 6:26 pm

picaroon wrote:From the context I see it used in - online reviews of pizzas etc. - I've concluded US English 'awesome' = British English 'awful.'

Technically it refers to something bigger than and incomprehensible to the user. No surprise that they use it a lot then.
Brits, Asians and Euros use it too...it's global...just listen around you - it's there...
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Re: What exactly does "awesome" mean anyway?

Post by Username Taken » Sat Jun 14, 2014 6:54 pm

dagenham wrote:
picaroon wrote:From the context I see it used in - online reviews of pizzas etc. - I've concluded US English 'awesome' = British English 'awful.'

Technically it refers to something bigger than and incomprehensible to the user. No surprise that they use it a lot then.
Brits, Asians and Euros use it too...it's global...just listen around you - it's there...
I've always thought it was an American thang.
With the www for the past 20 years, the whole world can learn to speak American just from watching youtube.
:popcorn:
... give 'em a quick, short, sharp shock ...

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dagenham
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Re: What exactly does "awesome" mean anyway?

Post by dagenham » Sat Jun 14, 2014 7:01 pm

Username Taken wrote:
dagenham wrote:
picaroon wrote:From the context I see it used in - online reviews of pizzas etc. - I've concluded US English 'awesome' = British English 'awful.'

Technically it refers to something bigger than and incomprehensible to the user. No surprise that they use it a lot then.
Brits, Asians and Euros use it too...it's global...just listen around you - it's there...
I've always thought it was an American thang.
With the www for the past 20 years, the whole world can learn to speak American just from watching youtube.
:popcorn:
I only wish it was just a Yank thang - then it could be somewhat containable...it's being said 736 times in the next hour - & that's only here in PP...tragic that...
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vladimir
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Re: What exactly does "awesome" mean anyway?

Post by vladimir » Sat Jun 14, 2014 7:55 pm

Yeah, it's one of those moronic expressions, like;

'I literally died laughing, dude!'
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Re: What exactly does "awesome" mean anyway?

Post by Cowshed Cowboy » Sat Jun 14, 2014 7:58 pm

Totally agree with you Dagenham, I cringe when I hear it. I follow golf and Michelle Wie the high profile female US golfer when interviewed can't complete a sentence without throwing in at least a couple of awesome's. For my own sad amusement I watch her interviews to see how many times she can fit the word in. I don't think it's a passing fad, unfortunately I think it's with us forever.
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dagenham
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Re: What exactly does "awesome" mean anyway?

Post by dagenham » Sat Jun 14, 2014 8:37 pm

Cowshed Cowboy wrote:Totally agree with you Dagenham, I cringe when I hear it. I follow golf and Michelle Wie the high profile female US golfer when interviewed can't complete a sentence without throwing in at least a couple of awesome's. For my own sad amusement I watch her interviews to see how many times she can fit the word in. I don't think it's a passing fad, unfortunately I think it's with us forever.
Yo Cowboy! So...at least you have noticed this phenomenon...most other people probably use it so much themselves that they don't even notice it themselves...language? what language?

By the way, you weren't called "Dude Cowboy" before and met Brad, a Starbucks marketing rep, on a bar stool one night last year? Just curious...
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Re: What exactly does "awesome" mean anyway?

Post by StroppyChops » Sat Jun 14, 2014 8:49 pm

I have Filipino mates, I'm pretty confident they all learned American English listening to those bloody awful language tapes used in the 70s and 80s (and still, in my first hand experience, used in high schools in China) and I think 'Ossum' might have been one of the included slang words.
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Re: What exactly does "awesome" mean anyway?

Post by Hugh Briss » Sat Jun 14, 2014 8:59 pm

dagenham wrote:
Cowshed Cowboy wrote:Totally agree with you Dagenham, I cringe when I hear it. I follow golf and Michelle Wie the high profile female US golfer when interviewed can't complete a sentence without throwing in at least a couple of awesome's. For my own sad amusement I watch her interviews to see how many times she can fit the word in. I don't think it's a passing fad, unfortunately I think it's with us forever.
Yo Cowboy! So...at least you have noticed this phenomenon...most other people probably use it so much themselves that they don't even notice it themselves...language? what language?

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