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Everyone is mocking Neil deGrasse Tyson for explaining the word ‘awesome’
Twitter is awesome.
Neil deGrasse Tyson is at it again. The astrophysicist and Cosmos host has become a punchline over the last year for his pedantic tweets. He’s a “well, actually” guy who will ruin things that you love—like when he explained the “bad physics” in fantasy series Game of Thrones. Tyson is either hyper-aware of what he’s doing, and trolling people, or he doesn’t see anything wrong with his tweets.
On Thursday night, he tweeted about his annoyance with people overusing the word “awesome.” He even labeled this opinion as a “back in my day” rant.
In my day, the word “Awesome" was reserved for things like curing Polio and walking on the Moon, not for food or TV shows.— Neil deGrasse Tyson (@neiltyson) April 13, 2018
To Tyson, only scientific advancements and major milestones in history deserve the “awesome” modifier. Low-brow stuff like TV shows and food can never be awesome. Damn, Neil. Way to ruin the start of our weekends.
His tweet was, naturally, mocked by people who enjoy awesome TV shows and food.
They're good shows Noel.— pourmecoffee (@pourmecoffee) April 13, 2018
Even Merriam-Webster seemed to disagree, tweeting Neil’s first name, which on Twitter is a sign that someone wrote a bad tweet.
Neil.— Merriam-Webster (@MerriamWebster) April 13, 2018
Other adjectives were also popular “back in the day,” but we don’t use them the same way today.
IN MY DAY "SWELL" MEANT TO GROW IN SIZE, NOT TO SPEAKEASYS OR THE CHARLESTON! https://t.co/5tAf81WM6D— James Urbaniak (@JamesUrbaniak) April 13, 2018
In my day the word "radical" was reserved for things like sick skateboard moves and Pizza Hut, not for science or political movements https://t.co/EYOTKIiK34— Elle Maruska (they/them) (@ellle_em) April 13, 2018
What do others in the science community think about Tyson’s stance? Well, Sophia Nasr, a physicist, disagreed that we can’t use “awesome” to describe arts, culture, and food.
Even former Congressman John D. Dingell, who is 91 years old, thought that Tyson needed to chill out.
Lighten up, nerd. https://t.co/SZxWbB2iTm— John Dingell (@JohnDingell) April 13, 2018
Tyson, if you need some awesome food and TV show recommendations, we’re here for you.
Tiffany Kelly is the Unclick editor at Daily Dot. Previously, she worked at Ars Technica and Wired. Her writing has appeared in several other print and online publications, including the Los Angeles Times, Popular Mechanics, and GQ.