Most Notable Quotations of 2009

Benjamin Zimmer bgzimmer at BABEL.LING.UPENN.EDU
Tue Nov 3 05:45:06 UTC 2009

On Mon, Nov 2, 2009 at 11:08 PM, Scot LaFaive <slafaive at> wrote:
> Kayne West after interrupting Taylor Swift at MTV Video Music Awards: "But
> Beyonce had one of the best videos of all time! One of the best videos of
> all time!"

Surely the entire quote should be used: "I'm really happy for you, and
Imma let you finish..."

> Sarah Palin on Obama's health care reform: "The America I know and love is
> not one in which my parents or my baby with Down Syndrome will have to stand
> in front of Obama's death panel."

There are several candidates from her resignation speech as well
("Only dead fish go with the flow," "I know when it's time to pass the
ball, for victory," etc.). Like last year, there's a risk of having
the list be overrun by Palinisms. Well, this year it would be
Palinisms and Sanfordisms. Beyond the Appalachian trail, Gov. Sanford
gave us such winners as "The biggest self of self is indeed self,"
"Have I done stupid? I have," and "If I wanted to know that I knew
that I knew... that's my prerogative as a human being." (All of these
were discussed on Language Log.)

--Ben Zimmer

> On Mon, Nov 2, 2009 at 8:41 PM, Shapiro, Fred <fred.shapiro at> wrote:
> >
> > I'm starting to think about my list for the Associated Press of the top 10
> > most notable quotations of the year.  By "notable" I mean "important" or
> > "famous" or "particularly revealing of the spirit of our times" rather than
> > necessarily being eloquent or admirable.
> >
> > Two that seem to stand out are Mark Sanford's spokesman saying "The
> > governor is hiking the Appalachian trail" and Joe Wilson's calling out "You
> > lie!"
> >
> > I would welcome suggestions of additional quotes from 2009, particularly
> > ones from politics or popular culture or entertainment or sports or business
> > or technology.
> >
> > Fred Shapiro
> >
> > ------------------------------------------------------------
> > The American Dialect Society -
> >
> ------------------------------------------------------------
> The American Dialect Society -

The American Dialect Society -

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