Google release a tool called Ngram Viewer several months ago to evaluate trends of words much in the same way Google Trends displays keyword searching trends.
This tool could be used to evaluate changes in the public lexicon, political views, or the ebb and flow of the public zeitgeist. Let’s use it to track something more juvenile: Specifically the words asshole, dickhead, shithead, and douchebag. Click below to expand.
Assholes, Dickheads, Shitheads, Douchebags
Wow, assholes reign supreme. By far there are more assholes than dickheads, shitheads, and douchebags combined.
Dickheads, Shitheads, Douchebags
Removing the vast swathes of assholes, we see there are more dickheads now than ever before. Scumbags have soared exponentially above the rest with a boom starting in the 1970’s. Douchebags relatively multiplied in the 1990’s with several bumps in the 1910’s and late 1930’s because of medicinal douchebags rather than the popped collar kind. The number of shitheads leveled off in the 1990’s compared to a meteoric rise of shitheads through the 1980’s.
The number of douchebags surprises me. Given the perceived growth of stupidly groomed facial hair, people who watch DVDs of Entourage, and an overinflated sense of self worth higher than AIG douchebags would appear more often.