Niagara Gazette

Community News Network

October 28, 2013

12 words you should stop using right now

— If you want a list of words to incorporate into your conversation to make you sound more intelligent, this is not the place. Frankly, I am not sure what you hope to gain by working random Internet vocabulary words into your conversations. These lists always result in conversations in which you pause for a few seconds and then say, furrowing your brow with intense concentration, "Dang, that lady makes a fine crepitation! I'd like to show her a machicolation or two, or would I?" And that which never impresses anyone quite as much as you would like. Instead, here are a few to purge from your speech immediately:

12. Actually. when you mean to use "literally," when what you really mean is "figuratively" or "not literally."

As in the sentence "I ACTUALLY DIED." No, you didn't. I appreciate your effort to stop using "literally" in that position, but "actually" isn't an improvement.

11. Irregardless

This is not a real word. "Ah," you say, "but neither was jangle when Shakespeare got started with it!" Sorry, this is not sufficient. Have you written "The Tempest" lately? "No," you say, because apparently you are really going to get into this with me, "but I did write something that was AT LEAST as good as 'Cymbeline,' if not miles better." Was it really, though? Are you sure? I acknowledge that "Cymbeline" was terrible, but somehow I doubt your assertion.

I'm sorry. We don't need to get into this. Just stop saying irregardless.

10. Exacerbate, when what you want is aggravate, when what you want is irritate.

The English language gave up on dragging aggravate back to its original meaning "make worse," years ago, when even Dickens used it to mean irritate. This being said, exacerbate is not the word you want when you are trying to talk about how irritating something was. I know it sounds longer and fancier than irritate or aggravate, but you mean exasperate. Leave exacerbate at "make worse," where it belongs. There is nothing more exacerbating than someone saying, "It was just so exacerbating!" - at least in the sense that this sentence makes the whole language worse. (I've harped on this before.)

9. YOLO

Just kidding, actually. Go right ahead and keep using YOLO. It is a handy flag for people whose acquaintance I can avoid.

8. Synergy

I think this word meant something once, but at this point it is stuck in some weird circle of post-Dantean business-tripping Hell where it goes from conference to conference and PowerPoint to PowerPoint getting listed as something to encourage.

7. Disrupt

Are you sure you're being innovatively disruptive? Are you sure what you're doing isn't just saying something inane?

6. "The salt of the earth"

Just once I want to hear a resident of a small town described as "the pepper of the earth" or "the Sriracha of the earth" because, hey, that guy must be pretty cool and go great with rice dishes!

5. Lucubrate

This is just a test to see if anyone uses this word. If you do, come be my friend! Let's go douse things in Sriracha together!

4. Game-changer

Unless you're talking about formative experiences in the life of rapper the Game, which you aren't, because what has he even been up to lately? Or something that happened in the course of a sporting event.

3. Twerk/Twerking

I realize that this happens. I just wish we didn't have to talk about it all the time.

2. Headline lies

This isn't a word so much as it is a sentiment, like "The Only Video Of X You'll Ever Need To See" or "This GIF of A Puppy Doing Something To A Pumpkin Spice Latte Will Change Your Life." Is it? Will it? I guess "This May be Marginally Interesting And It Won't Take That Much Time Away From The Project You're Ostensibly Doing" doesn't have the same click-bait cachet. Also, the term "click-bait."

Honorable Mentions:

 Mansplaining (the only thing I hate more than the word is the phenomenon), virality, epic (if it's so epic, where are the wind gods and sirens?), ironic, Renesmee.

1. Washington Redskins

 

1
Text Only | Photo Reprints
Community News Network
  • Dangerous Darkies Logo.png Redskins not the only nickname to cause a stir

    Daniel Snyder has come under fire for refusing to change the mascot of his NFL team, the Washington Redskins. The Redskins, however, are far from being the only controversial mascot in sports history.  Here is a sampling of athletic teams from all areas of the sports world that were outside the norm.

    July 28, 2014 3 Photos

  • 'Rebel' mascot rising from the dead

    Students and alumni from a Richmond, Va.-area high school are seeking to revive the school's historic mascot, a Confederate soldier known as the "Rebel Man," spurring debate about the appropriateness of public school connections to the Civil War and its icons.

    July 28, 2014

  • Fast food comes to standstill in China

    The shortage of meat is the result of China's latest food scandal, in which a Shanghai supplier allegedly tackled the problem of expired meat by putting it in new packaging and shipping it to fast-food restaurants around the country

    July 28, 2014

  • wd saturday tobias .jpg Stranger’s generosity stuns Ohio veteran

    Vietnam War veteran David A. Tobias was overwhelmed recently when a fellow customer at an OfficeMax store near Ashtabula, Ohio paid for a computer he was purchasing.

    July 28, 2014 1 Photo

  • Screen Shot 2014-07-28 at 1.33.11 PM.png VIDEO: High-dive accident caught on tape

    A woman at a water park in Idaho leaped off a 22-foot high dive platform, then tried to pull herself back up with frightening results. Fortunately, she escaped with only a cut to her finger.

    July 28, 2014 1 Photo

  • 072214 Diamond Llama 1.jpg Llama on the loose corralled in Missouri town

    A llama on the lam cruised Main Street Tuesday before it mistook a resident’s fenced backyard for a place to grab a meal and freshen up.

    July 22, 2014 2 Photos

  • Wal-Mart to cut prices more aggressively in back-to-school push

    Wal-Mart Stores plans to cut prices more aggressively during this year's back-to-school season and will add inventory to its online store as the chain battles retailers for student spending.

    July 21, 2014

  • 130408_NT_BEA_good kids We're raising a generation of timid kids

    A week ago, a woman was charged with leaving her child in the car while she went into a store. Her 11-year-old child. This week, a woman was arrested for allowing her 9-year-old daughter to go to the park alone. Which raises just one question: America, what the heck is wrong with you?

    July 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • NWS-HB0713-HowardMartin-004.jpg Airman laid to rest back home in Indiana six decades after death

    The mystery of what happened to a military transport plane that disappeared in the fall of 1952 into an Alaskan glacier was solved two years ago when a helicopter crew spotted the wreckage. But it took another two years to retrieve the remains of Airman Howard Miller and 16 other servicemen passengers. Saturday, Miller was laid to rest in his hometown of Elwood, Ind., with full military honors. Hundreds turned out for the funeral and burial services.

    July 13, 2014 2 Photos

  • New York to offer free lunch to all middle-school students

    New York's $75 billion spending plan for the fiscal year that began last week includes the first step toward offering free lunch for all 1.1 million students, expanding a program now reserved only for the city's poorest children.

    July 9, 2014

Featured Ads
House Ads
AP Video
Raw: 2 Shells Hit Fuel Tank at Gaza Power Plant Raw: Massive Explosions From Airstrikes in Gaza Giant Ketchup Bottle Water Tower Up for Sale Easier Nuclear Construction Promises Fall Short Kerry: Humanitarian Cease-fire Efforts Continue Raw: Corruption Trial Begins for Former Va Gov. The Carbon Trap: US Exports Global Warming UN Security Council Calls for Gaza Cease-fire Traditional African Dishes Teach Healthy Eating 13 Struck by Lightning on Calif. Beach Baseball Hall of Famers Inducted Israel, Hamas Trade Fire Despite Truce in Gaza Italy's Nibali Set to Win First Tour De France Raw: Shipwrecked Concordia Completes Last Voyage Raw: Sea Turtle Hatchlings Emerge From Nest Raw: Massive Dust Storm Covers Phoenix 12-hour Cease-fire in Gaza Fighting Begins Raw: Bolivian Dancers Attempt to Break Record Raw: Israel, Palestine Supporters Rally in US Raw: Air Algerie Flight 5017 Wreckage
Opinion
House Ads
Night & Day
Twitter News
Follow us on twitter
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide
Front page