more words

As you know, I love words and I love to follow trends, personal foibles, new words, anything that gives one an insight or a clue to the people that  use them. I've talked about vocabularies changing and expanding all the time. I've talked about U- and non-U words (Upper and Middle Class; Lower is like Upper), and the use of a brand name instead of a generic, in some cases.  I've noted other people's use of words. I came across a hint the other day about fashions and aging.  I sort of noted that before but here are some more:

Apparently older people, like me, say porridge instead of oatmeal. My mother used to call instant coffee ersatz coffee, the term she picked up during World War Two . Ersatz is from the German, meaning replacement.  Words change with the times. My mother never did learn to say refrigerator instead of icebox. Long ago I used to call those cheap rubber sandals I wore at the beach thongs. Nowadays they are called flip-flops and they are worn on the street and on escalators and in subways and I worry about peoples' toes. (CROCS are known to be very dangerous on escalators.)  And now thongs refers to those horrid G-string panties that younger women wear so as not to reveal a panty-line under their clothes. The best ad I saw for Fruit of the Loom's  sensible, comfortable underwear showed a variety of thongs bobbing along a clothes line to the tune of "Stuck in the Middle With You". I don't really know what to call sneakers, runners, tennis shoes, Nikes, Addidas whatever.  Is it best to use a brand name?  

A wrap used to be a sweater or shawl or jacket one put on to be warmer: "Put on a wrap if  you're cold."  Evening wraps were the most common. Now wraps are like a sandwich only trendier: tortillas or (lower-calorie) Romaine leaves wrapped around a filling.  

Well, I could go on and on but I have work to do.