Discussion in 'Linguistics' started by Orleander, Oct 10, 2009.
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I hate that one too. I also hate:
"I gave it 110 percent." - You can't give more than everything no matter how hard you tried.
"Pun intended." - I didn't laugh because it wasn't funny, not because I didn't realize it was a pun. Of course, most of the time when people say, "Pun not intended." They're really just pointing out that they made a pun so I usually hate that too.
"Organic Food" - All food is organic. If you regularly eat inorganic things you probably have an eating disorder called pica and you need to seek psychiatric help.
"Natural" (when used to describe a product). - What's the alternative? Unnatural? Supernatural? Excuse me, but unless you're grazing directly from the wild someone has planted, watered, fertilized, harvested, processed, packaged, labeled, shipped, and sold whatever it is you're eating.
leetspeak - You are not a hacker. You are not elite. You do not have root access and probably don't know what it is. In any case it is no longer 1985 and you are not dialed into a BBS. So stop typing like an 4$$|-|0L3.
I don't know if it originated in northwestern Los Angeles (the San Fernando Valley). But by using it in the rap on her hit song "Valley Girl," Moon Unit Zappa ensured that it would forever be associated with Valley Girls.
It's an adverb, so the syntax rule about its placement is fairly loose. As long as the meaning is clear it doesn't matter.
"Lately, I haven't been enjoying gamelan music" is equivalent to "I haven't been enjoying gamelan music lately."
Acceleration is the second derivative of distance over time: d-squared s over dt-squared. (I'm not messing with the symbol dictionary today.) Velocity is the first derivative of distance over time: ds/dt. So acceleration is the rate of change of velocity.
But that is exaggeration, a rhetorical device. Since we all know that you can't give more than 100% of your maximum effort, it takes on an air of humor.
That's just shorthand for "organically raised food." Back in the 1960s kids used to say "transistor" when they meant "transistor radio." Boy was that ever confusing for us electrical engineering students.
"Natural" is similar to "organic." But it focuses on the process of turning raw food into commercial food, rather than the process of growing the raw food in the first place. I'm not sure what the antonym would be. Probably a mouthful like "manufactured in a factory using lots of chemical engineering."
Perhaps originally, but I'm doubtful that most of the people who use the phrase know that it's impossible nor are they making an attempt at humor. In agreement with Orleander's contribution, most people would not know what a rhetorical device was if it bit them in the foot.
Yes I know. It makes no more sense than the shorthand term.
I agree. It has no real meaning in this context either.
In any case, the topic is what phrases we find most annoying. Not whether someone can find a viable excuse for their use.
You could say the same thing about any bon mot from an earlier era whose original cleverness is long forgotten. How about "between a rock and a hard place?" How about the hundreds (thousands?) of expressions we assume were handed down by the original Anglo-Saxons, but were actually created by Shakespeare?
Of course not, but that doesn't interfere with their ability to be affected by them. Rhetorical devices help the listener or reader:
Summarize what you've said
Understand your point
See why you're right and people who disagree with you are wrong
the list is endless...
Most people would not know what a carbon dioxide molecule was if it bit them in the foot, but when too many of them accumulate in their blood they always speed up their breathing.
Tolerance--the ability to live in harmony and cooperation with people outside our own little clan of cavemen whom we've known since birth--is the glue that holds civilization together. If you understand why a person does or says something, it can go a long way toward helping you not be annoyed by it.
it is amazing how far back some slang words go. i listen to old radio shows from the 30s-40s and you would be surprised at some of the slang terms they use.
"I just wanna aks you summin innit" - You can't aks me anything, and in what? We're outside.
"at the end of the day" - End of what day it's half 3?!
"I'll blade you" - Blade me? You can't blade me, you can stab me by all means but you can't blade me. What you going to do shave my legs with a bic razor?
"don't care was made to care" - Erm, what?
"I could care less" - When they really mean couldn't care less.
"are we there yet" - actually forget that one that wasn't quite what you meant was it? Please Register or Log in to view the hidden image!
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"who's your daddy?!" - well not you obviously, you're fucking me!
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Obviously not heard that saying in bed then huh?
I'm not quite sure why we're in a debate here. I have a decent lay-understanding of linguistic and how language evolves. Some phrases and words I find annoying for a few different reasons and obviously I'm not alone in this. It's not a change in meaning or usage, a lack of originality or humor that annoys me. You can use the word "bad" to mean "good" without bothering me.
I agree with the need for being tolerant of people. I disagree with being tolerant of ignorance. So for me, I tend to find a phrase or word irritating when its use is contrary to its meaning or nonsensical, particularly when its misuse is commonplace. I have far more tolerance for individual ignorance than that which is widespread. That being said, I certainly would not want someone to allow me to continue to misuse a word or phrase repeatedly without correcting me and I lose respect for professionals who business it is to know better (ad writers, news anchors, politicians, etc.).
The word literally is one of those words when used as described here. The 110% phrase tends to annoy me because it highlights an ignorance of mathematics, something I find to be a rather serious problem in our culture. I am not going to berate the person but I may roll my eyes and when I hear yet another athlete talk about their win in terms of giving 110% effort I may expound upon it and the horrid state of our educational system.
In regard to the words Organic Food and Natural, I find their use in this context to be ignorant at best and outright deception at worst. It is my opinion that people are being conned into beliefs that are untrue by marketers seeking to make a buck. Nothing new certainly, but I find it particularly annoying as its prevalence is growing and people seem strangely blind to it. Everyone realizes the auto industry is trying to convince you to buy a car but, for some reason, the same people think the "organic/natural" foods and products industry is altruistic. I have some more serious criticisms of this industry but they belong in another thread.
Like some others, I find the use of some words in certain contexts to be disrespectful and/or rude. This of course, is the reason Marie's daughter was grounded, not because she used the word "whatever" but because her use of the word was disrespectful. Again, in these cases I find no reason to be tolerant. Different from some people, however, I don't find the use of verbal fillers annoying, I tend to find them funny and they can make it difficult to remain awake during a speech.
Finally, it's fun to have a few pet peeves. They give you an excuse to get irritated and vent about nothing particularly important and as long as you don't go overboard with them it is my opinion they add a little flavor to one's personality. "Oh that's Jane. She hates Chihuahuas."
Separate names with a comma.