So, it’s time for a bit of fun…or maybe not

Each year for the past 41 years, the wordsmiths at Lake Superior State University issue their List of Banished Words and Phrases.

The first list of words and phrases that people love to hate was compiled at a New Year’s Eve party in 1975, and published on Jan. 1, 1976.

The 2016 list of overused, incorrectly used and those that fall into the category of general uselessness can be viewed here beginning with the ubiquitous and meaningless “So” as a sentence starter. The history of Word Banishment is also entertaining.

We have added the following few and our astute readers are welcome to join in with their own selections of annoying words and phrases. Have some fun….it’s the weekend.

  1. WENT MISSING: Oddly used in news reports to describe someone who has disappeared. FELL ILL is similarly strange.
  2. AWESOME AND AMAZING: Teens with limited vocabularies inappropriately overuse these words. But when mature adults declare their kids or grandkids fall into the realm of “amazing,” or their truck is “awesome,“ we suggest finding new acquaintances.
  3. REALTOR®: This is the correct spelling of the trademarked word.  It does not have an “I” between the “L” and “T.”
  4. AT THE END OF THE DAY: Unless you’re in the cast of Les Misérables, steer clear of this cliché. Besides, it belongs to Karl Rove.
  5. MYSELF: Maeve Maddox the “American English Doctor” gives some outstanding advice regarding the misuse of personal pronouns in this section “Myself is Not the same as Me or I.”

Tomorrow we return to the hard news. Barack Obama has just returned from his lengthy annual Christmas Hawaiian vacation and is prepared to move aggressively — bypassing Congress —  to increase federal controls over American gun owners, restricting our Second Amendment Rights. His ultimate intent appears to be disarming and leaving us vulnerable in these most perilous of times.


12 Responses to So, it’s time for a bit of fun…or maybe not

  1. lowadobian says:

    “Common Sense” the most disingenuous of them all. Used excessively by Democrats, RHINOs and the generally uninformed, its use is a foil for harebrained and often dangerous concepts and new law promotions where facts and logic are too ” hard”. (See “For the Children”)
    For the Children – The go-to phrase for those too intellectually challenged to articulate an actual position on any subject. (See also ” For Our Children and Grandchildren”)
    “We’ll Leave It There” – the interrupting ending of every newscaster, originated by CNN. It is a dismissive conversational coda that always has the effect of a turd in the pool. Said, then evacuated.

  2. Tucson GOP says:

    As a REALTOR, I am so glad to see that word on the SRAZ list! This article is one I’ve saved from a professional insider’s perspective.

    Enjoyed the post. Thanks.

  3. Clementine says:

    How about the arrogant habit some exhibit when they are speaking, ending their comments with “right,” as if they are the final word and if you disagree with what they just uttered shows your wrongness. I have a boss who engages in this haughty word play regularly.

  4. Hometown Guy says:

    My personal distaste is for newscasters begging viewers to use hashtags and businesses childishly asking people to “like” them on Facebook.

  5. East Valley Conservative says:

    How about the intentional misuse of the word “undocumented” to describe those illegally invading the USA? In fact, they have plenty of documents. They are either stolen, forged or otherwise counterfeit and part of a huge underground business allowing illegal aliens to get jobs, obtain drivers licenses, rent apartments, enroll their kids in school, and access benefits.They are not “migrants” either. They are illegal aliens not swallows migrating to Capistrano from Argentina each year.
    The swallows go home.

  6. Conservative Since Birth says:

    This is a great subject. The phrase “went missing” still doesn’t set well with me even after years of its use by newscasters, etc. The mispronouncing of “realtor” has always driven me crazy.

    Two of my ‘favorites’ that make me cringe are “efforting” and “cool.” I admire Laura Ingraham but when she (constantly) uses the word “efforting” as in ‘we’re still efforting to get that information..’ my ears turn red. Then when a 50 year old man or woman looks at something shown to them by their child or grandchild and say “cool!!” – the ears turn red again.

    One “phrase” that is constantly used by political pundits (hello – Jonah Goldberg, Steven Hayes) is when they use “yeah-no” to start their comment. I don’t know whether to laugh or cry. They were ALL doing it for a while – I think it’s dying down now.

    I especially cringe when the President of the United States tries to sing like Al Green when the whole world is on fire.

    • Kent says:

      How about the latest buzzword that I hear on the home show channel my wife sometimes watches “to clear (her) head from politics.” When I hear the contractors or designers talk about “functionality” (meaning function of anything from a toilet to a kitchen faucet), I want to shout “turn that crap off!!” Of course I’m too civilized to do that, so I complain here.

      I’m happy to report I completely missed the “yeah-no” phase. However I have heard educated adults say “my bad,” when they’ve made a mistake. What is THAT? Adults talking like toddlers is a bad sign.

      • Conservative Since Birth says:

        I completely forgot about “my bad” which was the one that really made me climb the walls. It just sent me into a frenzy (well, not quite). I don’t hear it that often anymore – thank goodness.

  7. Joseph Bickley, Sr. says:

    “Safe Haven” is a ludicrous redundancy that blows a gasket in my cylinders. A haven is by definition safe. Haven is a safe place, so the phrase really means a safe safe place.
    And not to demean our conservative readers of SRA, but two more phrases deserve their place in this discussion. People who say they “completely forgot” are trying to fool you into thinking this is somehow a degree above just forgetting. But you forget, you just forget. This is complete in itself. The usage equates to something like, “I completely lost my keys” or “I completely arrived home.”
    Speaking of pronunciation above, a trending word used almost exclusively by broadcast news people because they are the in crowd and have their own stylized argot is “often” with the t sounded, while the correct pronunciation is “offen,” which rhymes with “soften,” — no t.
    Finally, The state of Arizona has tried for many years to wean citizens of the “drivers license” charade. If you will take that document out and read it you will find it is merely a driver license. It is issued to just one driver; no plural, no apostrophe as some like to include. Corollary to this might be the expression, “I have to go to the doctor’s” when going to the doctor is sufficient.
    I close by wishing you a happy new year’s (or is it just new year??)

    • Sally Forth says:

      Some good ones here, Joseph. I will not forget the admonition regarding the driver license. I’ve been misusing that for years and was oblivious to the singular “driver” indicated on the card. I just checked and of course, you are correct. Thanks.

      I’ll add one more to this list: “Me and.” Yuppie parents who were loathe to correct their dimpled darlings incorrect speech now have adult kids who still express themselves using puerile idioms. Now their own children regard this as ideal speech because daddy says it. Generational foolishness takes center stage! Grammar seems to have moved to the rear of revisionist history and climate change in public schools. We have an 11-year-old neighbor who is now a vegan, since she saw a video at school about slaughtering animals for food. I asked her if she missed hamburgers and she nodded and said she did, but she “couldn’t bear the cruelty” associated with eating meat. Whether or not she can multiply or find China on a map is up for grabs.

      • Joseph Bickley, Sr. says:

        So, Sally, me and you agree 100% on all points; it seems many accurate phrases that used to be awesome and amazing have somehow gone missing in recent years. So, at the end of the day I thank you for responding to myself!

  8. Clark says:

    I’ll add the Oprahisms, “You go, girl,” and saying someone “passed” rather than “passed away.” Where exactly did they pass to or from?
    I also have a personal aversion to the “hip” encrypted messages such as ‘ICYMI” and “ROTFLMAO.” If you’re a grownup, speak like one!