Happy New Year!
The time does fly, doesn’t it?
At this time of year, I’m usually thinking about how people are going to pronounce the name of the new year, slightly concerned that people will continue to use the clunky two thousand and… construction.
This year though, I’m a lot more optimistic. 2020. Just look at it, surely it’s so much easier and more natural to pronounce it as twenty twenty. And I suspect from now on we’ll continue to pronounce the names of years in a similar fashion, as two two-digit numbers.
At least until maybe 2100 at least, but we’ll worry about that when we come to it!
Are you perhaps wondering why we use the expression 20/20 vision to refer to good eyesight by the way?
Well first of all, 20/20 vision doesn’t actually refer to very acute eyesight, but rather standard eyesight. The numbers refer to distance (in feet) from a standard eyesight chart. The top number refers to your distance from the chart, and the bottom the average person’s distance. So if you have 20/20 vision, that means that when you’re 20 feet (a little over six metres) from the chart, you can read letters that the average person can read from the same distance. If you had 20/15 vision, that would mean your eyesight was better than average, and 20/30, worse than average.