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Wasted words that say nothing
January 5, 2009 - Jim Smith
According to an Associated Press article, "movie about a 'maverick,' his journey 'from Wall Street to Main Street,' his 'desperate search' for a 'monkey' and a 'game-changing' revelation about his 'carbon footprint' probably would make the nation's word-watchers physically ill.
"Especially if it were the 'winner of five nominations.'
"All those words and phrases are on Lake Superior State University's annual List of Words to Be Banished from the Queen's English for Mis-use, Over-use and General Uselessness. The 34th version of the list was released Tuesday, which means, 'It's that time of year again.'
"Despite the year's economic meltdown (which itself wasn't banished but don't rule it out for next year), the most entries came from the environmental category -- for 'green' or 'going green.'
" 'At this point in time' was on the first list in 1976 and it continues to be nominated every year. People still hate it.
"'Get a life' was banned in 1997," but that doesn't stop me from saying we also should ban "fer" when the speaker means "for" and "ya know" from ever being spoken again ... especially by athletes who use it at the beginning and end of darn near every sentence. If everyone already "knows" what the athlete is talking about then there's no use for him or her to waste the air time.
"Now" and "currently" also are favorite wasted words in my book since the verb in a sentence would imply present time. The TV weather people seem to use "now" whenever they need to make a transition to the next sentence.
Of course "in this neck of the woods" also makes my hate list since I've never seen a "neck" in a woods.
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