2020-74-inconsequential grumble

Inconsequential Grumble: our beautiful language…

Hello friend,

Day 131…

Being the ‘serial whinger’ that I am (ahem), I thought it was time to resurrect what I had previously entitled ‘rant’ and rebrand it as my ‘inconsequential grumble.’ Think Victor Meldrew but prettier (1).

Do you, like me, ever get that little gnarly irritation when you hear certain words or phrases being used and overused? My top 5, in no particular order, are:

. “d’y’ know what” – actually, this is my top language irritation. As soon as someone says it on TV… channel change! I caught myself saying it a few days ago – naughty Graham!

. “like” – one of those filler words. I sometimes play a game, counting how many times someone uses this word in a
conversation or interview; and, yes, I have caught myself using it – naughty Graham!

. “absolutely” – a so overused adverb. I watched someone on TV use it 3 times in one sentence; I change channel to immediately hear someone else using that word. C’mon. There are so many other alternatives: totally, completely or utterly – to name but three.

. “smashed it!” – I’ve nothing left to say but… get off the bandwagon people and come up with something more original!

. “iconic” – this word is bandied about so arbitrarily to describe the most mundane that it has lost all of its power and meaning. People, nothing from this century is iconic – and very little (if anything ) from the last century!

Of course, I am all too aware of my own language foibles: “just”, “so” and “now.” I make no excuses. I think my overuse of the word “just” is my biggest irritation – naughty Graham!

Be happy, be safe and be kind.
Graham Coutts, 1st August 2020


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