The List

Every New Year’s Day, the first thing I do is open The Washington Post and read The List, a comparative account of what’s Out and what’s In in the new year. Other papers around the country may publish something similar, but the Post tends to include a few inside-the-Beltway references.

What always strikes me is that I didn’t know so many things were In until they were already Out. Brussels sprouts, for example. Conversely, I am amused to read what’s now In that was already In for me. For example, IHOP is now In. I celebrated my birthday there (by choice) two weeks ago.

Sorry, Betty White, you’ve been replaced by Anne Meara. I’m just glad you’re both enjoying your due glory.

I’ve jotted down a few personal Ins and Outs:

Two spaces after a period One space after a period
Oxford comma No comma
Hot house Central air conditioning
Goose bumps Hot flashes
Real Housewives of anywhere Hot in Cleveland
Coffee, alcohol, chocolate, garlic, onions, tomatoes, fried foods, and late night snacking Hot water and Dexilant happy hours
Zicam Webcam
Pandora jewelry Pandora radio


What’s Out and In for you in 2011?

Happy New Year.


Filed under All Things Wordish, Beauty and Fashion, Food, Health, Holidays, Marketing/Advertising/PR, Movies, Television and Radio, News, Reading, Technology and Social Media

7 responses to “The List

  1. They say that the fourth hour of the Today Show is in but I am so tired of Kathy Lee.

  2. Very Funny!
    For me-
    Going out is out. Blog is in.
    Happy 2011.

  3. Paul Pinkston

    Maybe old dogs just don’t want to learn new tricks. I’m pushing 60, and I bet I could make the changes, but I still think the Oxford comma helps to separate the items in a list and the double space after a period makes a sentence stand-out. It is my hope that people notice the sentence structure – not just read a bunch of run-on words.

    My fear is that capilization is going out among the X Generation. I tell the young folks I know that soon the pinky will evolve to small, lifeless flap of skin if they don’t start hitting that shift key.

    • Paul, I agree with you on shift key negligence, which I think has reached crisis stage. In 2010, I received a number of wedding invitations and printed announcements that were written in all lower case, including first and last names and street addresses. This is obviously a fashion trend, but I am having a hard time digesting it.

  4. Seemingly, “like” is out, “so” is in and, without context, there’s no reason for either.

  5. Kathy

    I cherish Oxford commas and ample spacing after a period and other forms of punctuation. They give a reader thoughtful breathing space in the flow of words. My greatest fear is that soon we will be writing and thinking in tweetspeak: “2Brn2Bthtiz?”

    A M.A.S.H. episode, “Hawkeye,” is one of best written and improvised scripts of the television show. After a jeep accident, Hawkeye is alone with a Korean family none of whom speak English. He, alone, talks the entire episode to avoid sleep from a possible concussion. Essentially, it is a brilliant soliloquy of gravitas and laughter with silent moments to mediate the wordy stream of consciousness.

    I raise a holiday glass to the silent moment, the empty space, the catch-your-breath and rest-your-eyes pause, the invitation for reflection amidst words, words, words.

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