The language police at Lake Superior State University have been offering up their annual checklist of senseless words for the past 38 years.
Here’s what they’d like to see banished from the Queen’s English for misuse, overuse and general uselessness in 2012:
• Fiscal cliff — refers to the United States federal debt ceiling;
• Kick the can down the road — a way of suggesting someone, or a group, isn’t living up to its responsibilities;
• Double down — a blackjack term often used, inappropriately, in place of re-affirm or reiterate;
• Job creators/creation — used repeatedly during the US presidential election;
• Passion/passionate — overused in describing the motivations of big business or business professionals, especially when it’s clearly
an exaggerated term to choose;
• YOLO — stands for You Only Live Once;
• Spoiler alert — essentially a way of letting people know you’re going to say something, even if they don’t want to hear it;
• Bucket list — essentially a way of stating what you’d like to do, this term emphasizes a focus on death, rather than life;
• Trending — means popular, at the moment;
• Superfood — food is either healthy or its not; there are no superpowers involved;
• Boneless wings — call it what it is, bits of chicken meat; and
• Guru — means an expert on a particular topic.
Strong arguments can be made for banning each of the university’s picks. What do you think of their selections?
Are there words missing, perhaps used by local politicians and other officials, that you think should be taken out of use? Send your thoughts to firstname.lastname@example.org, post them as comments on this editorial at www.londoncomunitynews.com, on our Facebook page or Twitter.