Those fine folks at the New Oxford American Dictionary have announced their Word of the Year for 2008. It's always interesting as their goal is to choose a word that has relevence to the American way of life.
I know y'all are on the edge of your desk chairs in anticipation so without further adieu, I proudly present the 2008 Word of the year: hypermiling!!!!!!!!!!
What, y'all ask is hypermiling? Hypermiling is to "attempt to maximize gas mileage by making fuel-conserving adjustments to one’s car and one’s driving techniques." Rather than aiming for good mileage or even great mileage, hypermilers seek to push their gas tanks to the limit and achieve hypermileage, exceeding EPA ratings for miles per gallon.
Some of the more rabid hypermilers do some pretty wacky things to optimize their mpg. For example:
* driving without shoes (to increase the foot’s sensitivity on the pedals)
* “ridge-riding” or driving with your tires lined up with the white line at the edge of the road to avoid driving through water-filled ruts in the road when it’s raining
The AAA has warned that hypermiling is unsafe. I don't know. I'm not a hypermiler. Miss Ruby is a very efficient lil' machine and I do my best to keep her running smoothly.
The other four finalists for the 2008 Word of the Year were:
* frugalista: a person who leads a frugal lifestyle, but stays fashionable and healthy by swapping clothes, buying second-hand, growing own produce, etc.
* moofer: a mobile out of office worker: i.e., someone who works away from a fixed workplace, via Blackberry/laptop/wi-fi etc. (also verbal noun, moofing)
* topless meeting: a meeting in which the participants are barred from using their laptops, Blackberries, cellphones, etc.
* toxic debt: mainly sub-prime debts that are now proving so disastrous to banks. They were parceled up and sent around the global financial system like toxic waste, hence the allusion.
I like all these words and think they can serve us well in our shaky at best economy and environment! And they shouldn't be too difficult to work into a conversation either!
Whaddya all think?
Kay (who is definitely a frugalista and proud)