31 December 2009

20-10, 2K-ten, 2000-ten?

I remember being a little kid and figuring out how old I would be in the year 2000. It was so far away, and at times too surreal, to actually believe that it would one day become reality.

Even though the year 2000 was a rather science-fiction notion to a youngster, throughout my years growing up I often thought about how we would refer to the year once we finally got there. In the English language we all seem to say years as two numbers; nineteen-sixty-eight, for example, while many countries used the long form; one thousand nine hundred and sixty-eight. If nineteen hundred was the accepted form a century before, would twenty hundred be used? It sounded awfully odd.

So I entered the new millennium and listened to the news, friends, store clerks, et al, and heard everyone say “the year two thousand.”

OK, so two thousand it was. But what about the following years? Would we go back to the nineteen-o-one model and say twenty-o-one? Or shorten it to naught-one? Again, it seemed that everyone decided to go the European, long-form route, and say two thousand and one. And it’s been that way for nine years now.

So why, all of a sudden, have we again switched and this New Year is being called twenty ten? And more importantly, why do I seem to be the only one in the whole word who has even given this any thought? It has honestly bothered me since I was that little kid thinking about all of this, that no one else seemed to think it was worthy of contemplation. I kept waiting to see a short essay on the subject, but after ten years of not coming across any mention of the whole situation, I suppose I should give up.

Is there really no one else out there who has thought about this?

May the New Year bring Peace, Health, Happiness, & Love to us all.