The Way We Talk Now. From the online excerpts:
Posted by Bill Stilwell at January 24, 2002 12:00 AM
Take the way we ask permission. It used to be that we said, "I'm going to take offnow; is that okay with you?" Now we say, "Are you OK with that?" The end result is the same but the perspective is inverted - the language has rotated its eyeballsone hundred and eighty degrees inward. It's as if to say, "Before I leave, please tongue your psyche and see if you encounter any raw spots that might prevent you from, as it were, being there for me when I get back."