Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Dogs v. Verbs

I was going to write a blog about my dog, but decided against it. I've found that, oftentimes, pet stories are usually only interesting to the owner of the pet. And, unless your dog, cat, bird, lizard, or monkey exhibits talents comparable to Mr. Ed, pet stories are not entertaining or particularly impressive.

But, it still doesn't stop people from thinking that their pets are special, unique, and especially smart and therefore exempt from the above rule.

So, I'm going so spare you all the dog blog (dlog?) I had planned on writing this morning and instead write about something else. (Although I make no promises about future writing in the Dogs v. Cats category).

That something else that is on my mind is grammar. Verbs to be specific.

Booor-ing, you may say. Perhaps. But our ever-evolving language continues to develop new words and new ways to use words, due to technology.

1. My favorite new verb is "Google." verb- to use the search engine Google.

Instead of saying "I am going to conduct a search on the world wide web using the search engine Google" we just "Google" it. "It" being whatever it is we want to know. And, surprisingly, "it" can actually be found on the internet, whether it be long-lost college friends, an academic paper, or a Simpsons quote.

Moreover, "to Google" is turning into a generic verb that applies to all internet searches, regardless of the internet search engine actually used- much like how Kleenex applies to all tissues, regardless of brand.

2. And then, we have "text." verb- to send a text message to someone via cell phone.

Significant others now get in fights, huffing "You never texted me last night!" Employees "text in" to their bosses at work, letting them know they are sick. Friends part with a "text ya later." And exes everywhere find traces of a former flame's previous wild night as evidenced by misspelled yet sometimes shockingly honest "drunk texts" in their cell phone message inboxes.

OMG. How embarassing.

3. The computer version of "text" is, of course "IM." verb.- to Instant-Message with someone via the internet.

"I was IM-ing with Jane today" is certainly much easier than saying "I was chatting on the internet with Jane on America Online's Instant Messenger's online chat service today."

For those who are on the internet all day, IM can be a convenient way to keep up with friends- especially those who live in other states. Yet, the troubling thing about IM is that it produces a transcript of your conversation. And there's that whole not being able to immediately verify if the person with whom you are chatting is who you think it is. Both of which could be problematic.

4. Then, of course, there's "blog." (verb- to write an article on a world wide web web-log)

The word blog, as Wikipedia says, is a portmanteau of "web-log." What's a portmanteau you may wonder? I had to look it up too. It's a word that combines two or more words to give a combined or loaded meaning. Neat.

In short, I power Blogger by blogging on my blog (called

Now, wasn't that more interesting than this?:

(Maybe not)

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