Arizona Lawmaker Reflects On Surviving COVID-19

Arizona Lawmaker Reflects On Surviving COVID-19

DON GONYEA, HOST: And finally today, the coronavirus has affected nearly every aspect of our lives this year, including our language. Every year for the past 30 years, the American Dialect Society has selected a word of the year. And this year – no surprise – it was COVID. But beyond that one, single word that has ruled our lives, the pandemic has also spawned other words and phrases, like the before times. For more on the words of 2020, we’re joined by Ben Zimmer. He’s the chair of the American Dialect Society’s New Words Committee, and he’s the language columnist for The Wall Street Journal. Ben Zimmer, welcome. BEN ZIMMER: Hi. Thanks for having me. GONYEA: So this is one of those stories that we always look forward to at year’s end – a chance to take stock of our language and how it evolves in the short term. It’s also generally one of those kind of fun year-end traditions. But this year I was, like, oh, boy. I don’t know if I even want to go there. ZIMMER: Well, it’s certainly been

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