Saturday, November 08, 2008

Here's a List of Top Irritating Phrases;
What Makes Your Most Irritating List?

Britain's Telegraph newspaper brings us word of a list of most irritating phrases, as compiled by researchers at Oxford University. It prompted a flurry of reader responses, more than 2,400 at latest count. We'd love to hear your list, gentle reader.

26 Comments:

At 12:59 PM, Blogger Art Durkee said...

The most irritating thing of all is the tendency to categorize all of life into Top Ten lists. A symptom perhaps of accelerating rate of change in culture, but definitely a symptom of the short attention spans created by the ever-shorter news cycle of the media, who often choose to provoke rather than consider carefully. Pandering, is what some might call it.

 
At 1:02 PM, Blogger John Ettorre said...

Touche! Great point, Art.

 
At 1:12 PM, Blogger Jeff Hershberger said...

The linguistic tic that bewildered me when I moved here was shortening "this needs to be washed" to "this needs washed". It makes the muscles of my neck tense up every time I hear it.

 
At 1:17 PM, Blogger John Ettorre said...

Not sure I hear that one much, if at all. Where did you move from, Jeff?

 
At 4:27 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Just dropping by with my pet peeve. My brother and dad run their own business together and between the two of them they drop every final "g" in goin', doin', and so on. They look so nice all dressed up in their suits and ties, then sound like a couple of yahoos.

THEN, my mom sends me all this far right wing political stuff which is annoying enough, but have you noticed so many on the far right drop their "g's" too? Ever hear Palin's "fightin'" words? What is this, some kind of epidemic? Am I over-sesitive, or has anybody else noticed this? All right I'm done with my haranguing around, my kitchen needs cleaned. (Sorry Jeff, couldn't help myself)

 
At 4:33 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Don't you hate it when people can't spell sensitive? Sorry :)

 
At 5:45 PM, Blogger Diane Vogel Ferri said...

this is funny because I've thought about posting my phrase pet peeves but never have - my absolute #1 is "you guys" - I am not a guy!!!

 
At 6:17 PM, Blogger John Ettorre said...

No, Diane, you're certainly not. Thanks for visiting, though.

 
At 8:28 PM, Anonymous MilesB said...

When somebody in a coffeeshop orders an "expresso".

 
At 8:55 PM, Blogger Pat said...

I know this one is already mentioned, but I hate when the bubbleheads on TV "news" programs keep saying "absolutely" to every stupid little remark or question.

I also hate "very unique," "general consensus," and the incorrect use of "hopefully" (which is an adverb). I hate when people close their letter with "Thank you," with a COMMA and then put their name. Essentially, they are thanking themselves. "Thank you" is a complete sentence in its own right and should end with a period, not a comma. (The comma makes it look as if one is thanking himself, as in "Thank you, Johnm" even though "John" may appear on the next line.)

Ooooo, but what I really HATE is when someone says, "THANK YOU IN ADVANCE." How presumptuous....

 
At 8:57 PM, Blogger Pat said...

And I hate when I leave typos.... ugh.

 
At 9:04 PM, Blogger Pat said...

"Due to the fact that" also drives me bonkers.

 
At 9:52 PM, Blogger John Ettorre said...

Expresso for coffee made me laugh, Miles. Pat, the improper use of "hopefully," one of the most frequent errors of all, also drives me crazy. It's everywhere.

 
At 10:09 PM, Blogger Pat said...

Hopefully, John, we can overcome the craziness. (Tee hee.)

Okay, here's another one: free gift.

Even worse: FREE GIFT with your purchase of [blah blah blah].

 
At 12:19 AM, Blogger Art Durkee said...

All oxymorons and clichés that are essentially conversation gap-fillers, that have no actual content.

This is exactly the sort of thing that gets stripped away during revision, or should. Clearly, the act of re-writing and re-reading, and revision, has fallen by the wayside, for these examples to have become so prevalent.

Gap-filling during impromptu public speaking is one thing—sometimes one needs a moment to organize one's thoughts. But in writing? There's no valid excuse; it's just laziness.

 
At 12:37 AM, Blogger John Ettorre said...

Yes, I agree that they are misdemeanors in spoken language, but felonies in written language.

 
At 6:20 AM, Blogger Diane DiPiero said...

"It is what it is." What does THAT mean?!

BTW, phrases like "this needs washed" are often used in the northwest area of PA, including Pittsburgh. You get a little bit of it in Y-town as well.

 
At 7:48 AM, Blogger John Ettorre said...

Thanks for the geographic insight, Diane. They're probably all washing their Steelers jerseys.

 
At 11:06 AM, Blogger Diane DiPiero said...

Yes, and by the way, it's "Stillers."

 
At 11:11 AM, Blogger John Ettorre said...

Ah, yes, the Pittsburgh Stillers. I remember being able to spot a Pittsburger in college by the way the pronounced Pittsbaaarg. But do they say warsh for wash? Or is that much further south and east than YTown?

 
At 11:28 AM, Blogger Diane DiPiero said...

In some parts, it's "wush." And I have plenty of friends from the 'burgh, so I mean them no harm or insult.

 
At 11:32 AM, Blogger John Ettorre said...

Diane, I don't think you've ever insulted anyone in your entire life. You're as well-mannered as they come. Perhaps it's that Baby Boomer Catholic upbringing.

 
At 12:34 PM, Blogger Diane DiPiero said...

:)

 
At 12:46 PM, Blogger John Ettorre said...

By the way, Di, I meant to pass along along a compliment that recently came your way. I happened to meet the impossibly effervescent Deby Cowdin of Blue Bag at an event, and recalled your recent article on her in Cool Cleveland. When I mentioned I knew you, she said that while she'd had several articles written about her and her company in the past, she thought yours was by far the best, the first one that really got it right. I told her I wasn't surprised. Anyway, I hope the rest of you might take a look at that article, link below, at Deby's Blue Bag site and finally at Diane's website and blog.

www.coolcleveland.com/index.php?n=Main.BlueBagRevolution

www.fromthebluebag.com

http://dianedipiero.com

http://dianedipiero.com/blog

 
At 9:45 AM, Blogger Diane DiPiero said...

Wow, John, thanks so much for passing along that story and sharing my info!

Everybody "have a good one!" (Another irritating phrase!)

 
At 10:01 AM, Blogger John Ettorre said...

I knew you'd enjoy that little tale as much as I enjoyed hearing it.

 

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