Word of the day
Originally published in Balanced Life magazine
It’s a win for gender fluidity! Sure we’ve been saying ‘they’ since we could talk, but it became the American Dialect Society’s word of the year for 2015 as a pronoun replacing ‘he’ or ‘she’ for those who don’t identify as the traditional binary genders.
Use it Jared said they’re going to wear the white sneakers.
Spark joy (verb)
The name of professional organiser Marie Kondo’s latest best-seller, and her formula for ridding your life of clutter: if something doesn’t spark a feeling of happiness in you, it’s time to say goodbye.
Use it 'I got rid of all my granny panties. They just didn't spark joy.'
Drop this into conversation with your manager and you’ll be sitting pretty come review time. ‘Amplify’ has been pegged as the hottest business buzzword of 2016.
Use it ‘Our new social media strategy has really amplified the brand’s presence.’
We can thank our genius friends at Google for this one. A moonshot is a ‘magical, seemingly impossible idea’ achieved through science and technology, from Galileo’s telescope to putting a man on the moon to teleporting to Japan. Just because we don’t know how to do it yet, doesn’t mean we can’t – that’s moonshot thinking.
Use it ‘It’s crazy to think that flying to Joburg was once a moonshot.’
Move over ‘on fleek’ – there’s a new adjective on the block to describe a killer outfit (or anything really, from your decor to your nails).
Use it ‘Quick, take a selfie. My make-up is snatched tonight.’
A portmanteau of business and leisure, ‘bleisure’ describes the new lifestyle trend of mixing work-related travel with a couple of days of holiday on either side.
Use it ‘I have to fly to Cape Town for a meeting on Thursday, so I think I’ll take a few bleisure days on the beach before coming back to the office on Monday.’
Trot out this one the next time you’re watching series with your teenager. Short for ‘relationship’, you ‘ship’ two fictional characters who you want to get together.
Use it ‘I totally ship Olivia and Jake forever in The Fixer.’
Being ‘woke’, at its core, means to be aware of social issues and systemic injustice. It was originally popularised by the #blacklivesmatter movement in the US as a sort of healthy paranoia, encouraging people to stay wise to the actual facts rather than the skewed sketches of mainstream media.
Use it ‘They said the suspect was killed in a shootout with police, but they didn’t say he was shot in the back while running away. Stay woke.’
It was about time we had an update on ‘hard-core’. Say hello to ‘savage’, used to indicate general baddassery. Employed properly, it also implies a devil-may-care attitude to the consequences of the savage action in question.
Use it ‘You just did 100 burpees in a row! That was straight-up savage. Aren’t you worried about walking tomorrow?’
If you’ve been doxed, someone has posted your personal information (from your address to your ID or bank account number) online. It could form part of a prank, a form of harassment or even vigilante justice.
Use it ‘I think I’ve been doxed. Someone keeps sending singing clowns to my house.’