I know it's early, but not too early to consider what not to say this year. According to Michigan's Lake Superior State University, the following phrases shall be stricken from the English language for 2012: "occupy," ''ginormous," ''man cave" and "the new normal." Not that these aren't descriptive and useful words, to be sure. The scholars at Superior State have asked us all to give them a rest. They're tired and in need of some airing out before being beat to death again. It would be easy to blame the messengers, especially when they have that "Superior" attitude, but I know what they're talking about. I don't want to hear about anybody's "baby bump" anymore. They would also like us to give up saying "thank you in advance," and talking about "blowback."
But there's one that I found most interesting and perhaps most poignant: Amazing. It is the opinion of the powers that be at LSSU that this word has become meaningless, since everything has become "amazing": races, wedding cakes, and Spider Man. Winning a race while decorating a seven layer marzipan creation while dodging bullets using your Spider-sense would be pretty impressive, but amazing? Maybe we can spend the next year working on something a little more descriptive to describe such a feat. For now, I will encourage you to stay away from our family's banished word, "epic." As in "That French Toast was epic, mom." Or maybe my son will spend 2012 writing a poem that will describe just exactly how amazing his mother's French Toast really is.