The 2000s: A Decade of Doom or Diversions?

Initially, he believes, the decade "is going to be defined by 9/11, the wars and then the recession," events that began during the Bush administration. But he doesn't think it was "the Bush decade," because he believes history will judge Bush as a "a losing president," and "I don't think people want to put a loser label on it."

Though he believes individual events will be remembered, our nameless decade may fall through the cracks.

"I think there's a way people deal with historical information," he says, adding that a shorthand name -- like the '50s, '60s, '70s or '80s -- crystallizes a historical period in people's minds and "elevates its importance."

"When Michael Jordan became Jordan and then Michael, it elevated the way he was perceived as an icon," he says, explaining the power of an iconic term.

"I just sort of see this decade going the way the 1900s did," says Batchelor, also author of the book "The 1900s," about the first decade of the last century.

"We remember individuals from the 1900s," he notes. "You can't look at the American century without looking at Teddy Roosevelt, but you don't talk about the 1900s. You have the assembly line -- jeez, the things that happened."

But ask people to define the 1900s period before World War I, and most draw a blank, he says.

"It's the foundation," he says of the opening decade 1900s -- and perhaps this century's, too. "It's the bricks holding up the rest of the century. But for a time, they're overlooked."

Add to that the here-today-gone-tomorrow aspect of the modern news cycle, and Batchelor is more skeptical that people of tomorrow will think about today.

"How do you give a name to a cycle when tomorrow's thing is going to be the new black, so to speak?" he asks.

Even so, there may be some hope for our decade as history takes further twists and turns.

"Perhaps in retrospect," Batchelor says, "if the millennial generation becomes the next great generation, then in retrospect, when they look back on their teens and 20s, which is now, perhaps that's how the decade ends up becoming named."

Sigl seems to see the possibilities.

"This is my decade, my generation," he says. "I think so much of what happened this decade and so much of what we'll remember is stuff created by my generation.

"I think this was our decade."

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