Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Meaningless Is Awesome



 

“How was the flight?” I call a friend after she lands in Bangalore.

“Cool.”

“How’s the weather?”

“Awesome.”

“And your office?”
“Sexy.” 


I realize that cool is a sexy word with awesome usage. And the word sexy is so awesome that it can be used in cool ways.


The funny thing about sexy is that it can be innocent, deliberate, offensive and complimentary depending on the subject and the context. Type the word on Google and it leads to images and videos which can be a nightmare of any parent with kids. Unlike cool and awesome, sexy is an age appropriate word. Kindergarten kids describing their candy as sexy can make any parent squirm. 


Then there are some who believe that a sexy woman is one who enjoys having sex. It is all about the subject and the context. National Commission for Women chairperson said that girls should not get offended if roadside Romeos make passes at them by calling them sexy. Addressing a packed audience of women she said, “If boys tease you by calling you sexy, you should not get provoked. Instead you should take it as a compliment. Sexy means excitingly beautiful and charming.” Huh?
Any roadside stranger calling a woman sexy deserves one tight slap.


The thing with some words is that once they become viral, we recognize them more in colloquial speech than in literal terms. Cool they say was first used as slang in forties to label a new style of jazz which was different than ‘hot jazz’. Today it can be used to describe Modi’s speech, Priyanka's tattoo, Sachin’s sixer or a Dairy Milk chocolate. A thorough stomach cleanse in the toilet can be cool too - even sexy or awesome. There is a certain positivity attached with these three words. I mean, you cannot call Modi's arm pits or Mulayam's nose sexy. Or cool.Can you?


Since I use the word awesome often, I was amused to read that British poet John Tottenham hates the word awesome so much that he started a campaign to stamp out the word. He created bumper stickers and T-shirts for his movement to ban this ‘superlative meaningless’ word.
A comment on his post was very interesting. “Why does anything we say have to have a meaning? Meaningless is awesome. Somebody should tell this Brit to lighten up and bloody p**s off.” Article

Apologies for wasting your time on a topic as obtuse as this. But after enough soap and soup, I was in mood for some idle chat. Remember ‘meaningless’ is awesome. Just like an old Govinda movie.
I bet no one can look as cool as he did in yellow pants singing that awesome song – Meri pant bhi sexy, Meri shirt bhi sexy hai.


Picture Courtesy: gobollywood.com

80 comments:

  1. Haha.. very hilarious and awesomely sexy and cool post :)

    Regards,
    Jahid
    Flashbacks

    ReplyDelete
  2. "Awesome" post. It can be expected that "sex" is a word which can be understood or misunderstood, But I fail to imagine how a word like 'awesome' causes allergy to the poet that he went to an extreme extent of calling it a "meaningless superlative."

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Some people take themselves too seriously. But they make this world an interesting place...ha ha.

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  3. Lol
    Hehe . Funny one ;)
    But mulayams nose is cool . My god :p
    I use the word cool though not often but I never find anything extremely good sexy !
    It has to be really sexy to be sexy
    And awesome only reminds me the cinthol ad
    Having said ur post is awesomifying and sexily cool :p matlab brahshtachar kardi English ki

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. One of his ministers said that....but it is definitely not sexy. Lol.

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  4. Lol double lol!!!! I dont use the word sexy much, but awesome and cool--dang I am guilty of overusage.In btw you do have a cool blog and awesome topics...(I wonder what is it about "sexy" that makes me hesitate to use as much!)

    ReplyDelete
  5. Some words become very popular for no apparent reasons and the rampant use of this limited vocubalry is like a fashion fad that shall pass ! Good writing as always Alka:)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Rahul, I guess cool will remain cool for a long time.

      Delete
  6. It is awesomely impressive Alka :D a hearty laugh before sleeping.

    ReplyDelete
  7. Lol...cool..cool...sexy cool...hahaha...funny post, Alka. I use the word sexy especially for black cars...:P sounds funny huh?? I use cool too if any work is done...anything accomplished..I don't understand how awesome is meaningless...strange!!!

    ReplyDelete
  8. Awesome lost its awesomeness with over-usage. And isn't sexy the new nice?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Sexy is pretty dicey....depends on who is saying and in what context. Among friends it is nice and pretty.

      Delete
  9. I honestly did not know about the campaign to stamp out 'awesome'. That is one bit of trivia that will stick for quite some time :)

    I do not know how much we are ready for any of these words. Usage of words is like dresses we wear- meaningless without the attitude to carry it forth. So while my generation vomits slangs all the time, they do not have the stomach to question popular stereotypes. Girls would wear the short top and try to stretch it at the back whole day long. Meaningless.

    One of my favourite teachers from college told this in some lecture, that I was lucky enough to attend: Chaos can be looked upon as the search for new equillibrium. So while meaninglessness might irritate a non-intuitive mind, it might be a clue to something new for the special few. Frost, after all, said... " how way leads on to way" :)
    So I guess we are cool with meaningless.

    On a personal note, I do not think I have ever complimented someone as being sexy, because quite frankly, I do not know what that is. Maybe the expression of gender-hinged-sexual-appeal. Not sure.

    Plus a female friend, who dated me for some time, told me that "beautiful" is far dearer compliment than "sexy". The former being intrinsic and very much a person trait while the latter about overt appearances and the perception of the observer. By god this is all so confusing :(

    PS- Apologies for the jibber-jabber :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Ha ha...the usage of sexy is confusing. And you right about the physical connotations. So beautiful rules over sexy for most.

      Delete
  10. where did my comment go? Any ways I wrote something about "wow" being another inane and over used word !

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thats a good one. And Saif sure has made it WOW!

      Delete
  11. I use the word awesome a lot. Cool is not one word I use too much. Alka, am I allowed to say this is is an awesome post (I was going to say sexy, but thought awesome would be better)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I am not too comfortable with sexy either. Awesome rules.

      Delete
  12. LOL :D Awesome post! And yes it is cool too! :D
    I use 'cool' and 'awesome' a lot, but not sexy!! :D

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I guess, a lot depends on the subject and the context.
      BTW Shilpa, saw your family picture and your son reminds me of my son in several ways.

      Delete
    2. Wow! That's so cool :D Are they similar in looks? Would love to know more! :)

      Delete
  13. I never use any of these words. I am a bit old fashioned.
    I use bloody a lot. ;)
    And of course meaningless in awesome. Look at our television soaps. Aren't they awesome?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. What do you use for something that's really wow?

      Delete
  14. I use cool and awesome quite often! But somehow cannot bring myself to say words like sexy and hot! Somehow I feel these words are lustful :^)

    Brilliant post as usual :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Sexy is not for me either. Awesome rules.

      Delete
  15. Many words acquire different meanings depending on the context and person they are used with.
    This was an enjoyable read.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Glad you enjoyed it. It was fun writing this.

      Delete
  16. VERY NICE POST AND THIS INCIDENTS OF MEANINGLESS WORDS MANY TIME HAPPEN IN LIFE. KEEP WRITING HAPPY WOMEN DAY PLZ READ MY POST @ http://cajitendrajain.blogspot.in/2013/03/woman.html#links

    ReplyDelete
  17. Now i will have to be very careful how i describe your post-but it is cool & i liked it.
    Words change their meaning with time & some become a fashion statement.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Welcome here Indu. Yes, words change with time and technology. A decade ago we were not aware of LOL and OMG. Glad you liked it.

      Delete
  18. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  19. Actually,it is awesome,may be meaningless, though

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  20. Really Coool post,only place I disagree is that it should have been Rakhi Sawant's Armpits and Mulayam's Nose.....Otherwise An Awesome Piece....

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Now my imagination is running haywire. LOL.

      Delete
  21. :D

    Made me sit back and think if I use such words in my conversations too. Though I didn't find that I do much, but realized some of my friends cannot strike up a conversation without using these words in almost every sentence. I wouldn't say this post was awesome because none of your posts are ever meaningless. :-)

    And for someone who keeps away from Hindi movies, people find it strange when I actually enjoy some of Govinda's old comedies (if you can actually call them as comedies :D ) just for the sake of the silly humor in them. :-) That guy actually has the talent of comic timing.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Apologies for replying after a gap of months. In fact no one can beat Govinda when it comes to mindless comedy.

      Delete
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