Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Great Expectations

The Great Depression.
The Great Recession.
What was so great about these events?

In the Depression in the 1930’s, people lost everything they had, there was this massive dust storm in the Midwest, and it was not a happy time in America.
I think not.
They should have called it the Horrible Depression; or the Devastating Depression—that’s more alliterative.
Not so much.

Same thing with the most recent economic recession.
What was so great about that?  Jobs were lost, houses were foreclosed, and businesses went broke.We should have called it the Really Bad Recession, or the Awful Recession.
There was nothing great about it.

I went to see “The Great Gatsby” recently, the story of a guy who reinvented himself after the First World War. The movie is based on a great American tragedy. Not that the tragedy was all that grand—it was actually pretty sad. But the story was great, and the movie exceptionally well done, and so aptly named.

They called World War 1 “the Great War” until World War 2 came along.
Then they realized pairing positive adjectives with negatively connotative nouns wasn’t such a “great” idea.
I rest my case.

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