What Words From 2012 Would You Banish?

Jan 2, 2013

Bring us your tired metaphors, overused phrases and words that summon an unpleasant visceral reaction. Ben Zimmer, language columnist for the Boston Globe, explains why these words and phrases bother us so much. Sometimes a word variant sounds odd to our ear, even if it’s correct, such as “pleaded” rather than “plead.” Other problems arise when words reveal disparities, such as a lack of an equivalent term for the opposite gender. And jargon can become offensive when it migrates from its original community to more common use in mainstream media or by different age groups.

Here are the words on your list, in no particular order:

  • dude
  • epic
  • bromance
  • on the ground
  • reaching out
  • my bad
  • the American people
  • double-down
  • pleaded, speeded, hanged and leaped
  • breaking news
  • compassionate conservative
  • fracking
  • do the math
  • no worries!
  • "bro" and "bruh"
  • irregardless
  • awesome
  • That's what she said!
  • thrown under the bus
  • hella
  • "Just sayin'" and "I know, right?!"
  • YOLO
  • taking it to the next level
  • The Beb, as in Justin Beber
  • entitlement

Chris Kelly on Facebook had a different take on banning words or phrases: