Commentary Strange Fruit

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As 2015 draws to a close, we have our annual chat with Grant Barrett, an officer with the American Dialect Society, about the words and phrases that were on everyone’s lips (and texts, and tweets, and Tumblrs) this year.

Last year, ADS chose #BlackLivesMatter — the first time in the organization’s history that a hashtag was named Word of the Year. One of our favorite contenders this year is a hashtag that grew out of the #BlackLivesMatter movement: #StayWoke.

“It’s being aware of the injustice in the world,” Barrett explains, “and letting your friends and followers know that you are keeping an eye out — that you’re one of those people who isn’t just sheeple.”

They haven’t released the official list yet, but we talk about top contenders, including Netflix and chill, thighbrows (they’re the new thigh gap), creepy, spoopy, and watch me Whip, watch me Nae Nae. Barrett says the song is so mainstream now that it’s transcended its genre (and his third grade son even made a Whip and Nae Nae Christmas cookie!).

Laura is LPM's Director of Podcasts & Special Projects.