Bonfire of Inanities

My following is obviously growing. After I wrote about the Banished Words list the other day, the BBC followed in my wake when the issue was included on 7 Day Sunday on Radio Five yesterday.

Okay, so they might have read about it on the Hot Word Blog which is where I stole the idea from in the first place, but a boy can dream.

Anyhoo, I thought it would fill a gap in my blogging schedule by revisiting the story by including a clip from the show:

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Listeners were asked to send in their nominations, several of which have begun to grate on my nerves.

Literally came top of the list which I completely go along with. Why do people use literally by way of emphasis when really they mean figuratively? Other than the fact that no-one would know what they were talking about.

Another nasty is the people who begin their answer to a question with ‘Yes.. no…’ which I’ve begun to notice happening more and more frequently of late.

One cliché that one listener wished to see the end of was ‘at the end of the day’ which he thought it ‘was well past its sell-by date’, although I think he was being ironic.

I was surprised that awesome wasn’t put forward sooner. It might be a perfectly good word, but not when used to describe something mundane, like a new pair of trainers or YouTube video.

As you might expect, politicians came in for a bit of a drubbing for their hackneyed phrases. I am not alone in being heartily sick of hearing about ‘hard-working families’.

But worse still is the politicians’ inability to construct a simple apology, as David Cameron failed to do yesterday. They always start by saying ‘if I have offended anyone…’

Obviously, they have offended someone or they wouldn’t be apologising, so why can’t they just say sorry?

Nobody’s prefect. If you find any spelling mistakes or other errors in this post, please let me know by highlighting the text and pressing Ctrl+Enter.

2 comments… Add yours
  • Roger Green 9th January 2012

    The US version of Yes/no may be That’s a very good/interesting et al question.
    Wish I could find the source, but apparently ‘literally’ is now accepted in certain linguistic circles (not mine) as when ‘figuratively’ would be used by you or me .
    But my least favorite is a disease of the US Sunday morning news shows: “The American people” “The American people believe that we should [or should not] raise taxes on the rich.”
    And “the rich” are now “job creators” , whether they are or not.

  • john 9th January 2012

    Your following is growing!!!
    oh err missus,,,,,,, I feel we’ve fallen into a carry on film!!!


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