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An Idea from David Foster Wallace's Infinite Jest, where corporations bid on the title for each year, resulting in names like "Year of the Whopper", "Year of the Whisper-Quiet Maytag Dishmaster, and YDAU -- "Year of the Depend Adult Undergarment.

Don't forget to mention that all previous years are now designated BS, or Before Subsidization. It's unclear as to exactly who gets paid what for the honor of naming the year, though one assumes it's the government and/or O.N.A.N. doling out the contracts and reaping the contracts.

Because the book skips back and forth in time, it's a good idea too put a bookmark in (let's see..) at page 223 (if you've got the same version as flamingweasel does). Yes, this is a bookmark-intensive book, but it's worth it for comprehension; otherwise you'd be terribly frustrated.

DFW does a pretty good job of understanding the way the public relates to social changes; see his chapter on the rise and fall of "videotelephony" for a case study (yes, the one with the unbelievably long title). In the case of subsidized years, you're sure there was some kind of public discussion on it when it was new. It was the topic of the minute, and made its way into casual conversation and jokes like Viagra did when it was new or the chads when debate of that debacle was in vogue. But by the Year of the Dove Bar, two years have passed. Who notices? It is a part of life, like URLs on billboards are now.

Of course, it's probably still a pain to programmers, calendar designers, historians, and right-thinking people everywhere. You wonder if Christian church interests marched the streets in this alternate not-so-distant future, protesting the change from a Christ-based numbering system to something so, well, profane. But there's nothing - n o t h i n g - more sacred than the almighty dollar. Everything else is BS. Adapt to that.

Chronology of Organization of North American Nation's Revenue-Enhancing Subsidized Time™, By Year

  1. Year of the Whopper
  2. Year of the Tucks Medicated Pad
  3. Year of the Trial-Size Dove Bar
  4. Year of the Perdue Wonderchicken
  5. Year of the Whisper-Quiet Maytag Dishmaster
  6. Year of the Yushityu 2007 Mimetic-Resolution-Cartridge-View-Motherboard-Easy-To-Install-Upgrade For Infernatron/InterLace TP Systems For Home, Office, Or Mobile (sic)
  7. Year of the Dairy Products from the American Heartland
  8. Year of the Depend Adult Undergarment
  9. Year of Glad

Copied by hand from Infinite Jest, page 223 of the First Paperback Ed.

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