By Thomas Skernivitz
In turn, my next-t0-most-used words would have had to have included some, if not all, of the seven dirty words that George Carlin made famous.
Surprisingly enough, none of those words made my list. Not “Indians” nor “Browns” nor “Cavs” nor any four-letter words that typically erupt in the wake of any given meltdown by our pro sports teams. Not even a simple yet to-the-point “WTF!”
What the … hey?
In case you’re Facebook oblivious — and aren’t you the lucky one — some company based in South Korea created a “quiz” on the social media platform. With your consent, the quiz pulled data from your Facebook profile and created a “word cloud” graphic that identified 100 or so words that have most often appeared this year in your status updates. The bigger the point size of a word, the more popular it was. Plastered in the middle of the graphic, with the emphasis of Dewey Defeats Truman, was your most-used word.
I was intrigued by the most popular words of some of my Facebook friends. One individual’s word was “polka.” She, of course, was from the homeland of Garfield Heights. One recently married friend boasted two words equal in lofty point size — the first and last names of her husband. Apparently every kiss in the age of social media begins with a romantic status update. Not surprisingly, there were plenty of mentions of the first names of children and grandchildren and dogs.
Kevin Goodman’s top word was a gem — “morning.” Much to my envy, the CBC columnist is often out and about at the crack of dawn. His ensuing posts are comprised of photos and equally inspiring passages. If only I could start my days like that, I typically wonder. Actually, at 51, I usually am awake that early; I just happen to spend that time wondering, “Why the heck am I awake this early?”
Another CBC columnist, business fashion expert Traci McBride, made the word “love” No. 1 on her page. In this day of social media acrimony, that is quite the accomplishment. Of course, it also means McBride must not address politics and social issues … and Cleveland sports.
So, what were my most-used words? Close to the top were the names of our sons, Solomon and Lionel. The point size of the older brother was a few ticks bigger, so now I’m dealing with the guilt of favoring one child over the other. Fortunately, it’s my secret until they turn 13 in a few years.
In lieu of Cleveland’s sports clubs were the Mets and Braves — our boys’ baseball teams. Speaking of “baseball,” that word ranked well. Ditto for the word “movie.” Some people talk politics or work on Facebook. I stick to sports, movies, and music.
Speaking of movies, topping the list of my most-used words was unfortunately the rather mundane “one.” That’s it — “one.” Not much to work with there. The first thing I thought of was Curly, the Jack Palance character from “City Slickers,” who holds up one finger and tells Billy Crystal’s character that the secret to life is “one thing.” “You stick to that,” he adds, “and the rest don’t mean (one of George Carlin’s seven dirty words).”
Like Mitch Robbins, I, in turn, wonder, “What is the ‘one thing?’” “That,” Curly answers, “is what you have to find out.” Swell. As if I couldn’t sleep at night already. Thanks, Facebook.