January 4, 2008

Banished words

Lake Superior State University publishes an annual List of Words Banished from the Queen's English for Misuse, Overuse and General Uselessness.

"On Dec. 31, 1975, former LSSU Public Relations Director Bill Rabe and his colleagues cooked up an idea to banish overused words and phrases and issue a list on New Year's Day. Much to the delight of language enthusiasts everywhere, the list has stayed the course into a fourth decade.

This year's list derives from more than 2,000 nominations received through the university's website, www.lssu.edu/banished. Word-watchers target pet peeves from everyday speech, as well as from the news, education, technology, advertising, politics, sports and more. A committee makes a final cut in late December. The list is released on New Year's Day."

I'm on board with most of these (turning nouns into verbs like "authored" instead of "wrote" and "gifted" instead of "gave" drives me crazy), although I still like to say "sweet," but more like this: "Suh-WEET!"

Here are some of my pet peeves I've posted before:

Using the letter "a" as the word "a."

Saying "podium" instead of "lectern."

"It's not your grandmother's (fill in the blank)."

"Monetize" (As Inigo Montoya said to Vizzini, "You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means.")

Using "compose" and "comprise" interchangeably.

Apostrophe abuse

"Make your butterflies fly in formation."

I'm going to start submitting to the list. What words or phrases would you like to see banished?

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4 comments. Please add yours! :

Anonymous said...

Irregardless and literally

Lisa Braithwaite said...


Anonymous said...

'So, to sum up...'
'Putting our ducks in a row'.
'At the end of the day...'.
'Erm', 'erm' and 'erm'.

Lisa Braithwaite said...

"At the end of the day" sends my husband through the roof!

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