Changing Vernacular

Going through the file system on my 5 year old PC tonight, I just realized that there’s a lot of words and phrases I’ve shed since I first started using it…

For instance, I named one folder “Movies, Films, One-offs and Specials”

I can’t remember the last time I used the term “one-off” referring to something like a failed pilot, or a special like the Star Wars Holiday Special.

I also saw a file named “Kajigger”, which I can only chalk up to my watching a lot of Futurama at the time and one of the characters voiced by Tress MacNeille always uses that word as a generic signifier. I used to use “Kajigger” all the time, but haven’t in years now.

Anyone else have any experiences where they see their past writing or language use and have the sudden realization that one’s own idiolect has dramatically changed over the years?

I don’t know why this sticks out for me. Maybe it’s just evidence that we all are rapidly changing and don’t even know it’s happening.


I read old bbs comments I made less than 3 years ago and it sounds like a different person.

I seem to be highly influenced by the kinds of stuff I’m thinking about/most interested in. Seems my idiolect is entrained to my ideation. :slightly_smiling:


not that I’ve noticed recently, but I suppose everyone’s is always changing on some level. the last time it happened to me noticeably was in my 20s when I went from a lifelong hip hop fan to becoming more immersed in and participating in hip hop activities and events; my use of its idioms and just ebonics generally became my everyday mode. this was really gradual, though. starting at 18 to present levels at around age 28 or so.

come to think of it, my Southern idiom uptake was like that, too, but shifted later; maybe ages 26 to 37ish I guess. this includes accent and idiom. I remember hearing myself say “aisle” in the grocery when I was about 28 and it coming out as “ahh’l.”
“That’s new,” I thought.

incidentally, that same pronunciation is the correct way to say “owl” around this region, too.

So, sounds like, compared to y’all, mine is more glacially-paced but far more pronounced.

my handwriting has gone through several phases, too. I want to say I settled into what it is now in my later college days. my high school hand looks nothing like it, nor my elementary school hand, either. that’s probably common? but mine are all really different from each other.

the biggest recent change for me (and everyone) is using reaction images/memes and pictures generally on the internet to communicate rather than words. the impact of this will probably be studied by historians assuming we all survive the apocalypse.


like, totally.


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