Friday, November 02, 2007

Question for Word Lovers -

...What words do you NOT like? (I'll tell you my answers after you tell me yours and then we can go around being curmudgeonly and covering our ears when we hear them.)


I Was Just Thinking.... said...

I don't like word combinations that begin with R and W, like Round Window, or Rich Widow. I always end up stuttering them, or sounding like a bad rendition of Baba Wawa from SNL. Those are words I don't like tonally (sp?).
Politically I hate liberal, conservative words - words that lock you in a box.
Emotionally I don't like the word grammar. I never enjoyed learning it, I struggle with it and I don't want to pass on my phobia to my kids. We are focusing on grammar this year bc I've neglected it in the past. But there is a door that shuts in my brain whenever I hear that word.

Anonymous said...

"Nauseous," as in "I feel so nauseous." Really, now, there's no need to be so down on yourself!

Paula Wilson

Marti Smith said...

But Paula, there are days when I =do= feel nauseous! Thankfully, they are rare - as are days of feeling nauseated... I feel a little of the latter after coming back from a shopping trip, looking for birthday cards. Why are so many of them so sycophantic, so demeaning, or so dumb? The ones labeled 'funny' seem so vulgar.

But back to words. I thought I was pretty good at grammar but discovered, to my shame, that I'd been misspelling the word, itself, previous to enrolling in 'grammar for journalists.' There I learned significant facts like the connection between commas and dependent and independent clauses.

Barb, I'm with you on words like liberal, conservative, etc. Anything that polarized the world into two kinds of people - my kind and the other kind - is problematic.

And yes, the sound of words does make a difference, doesn't it? I don't like the word 'hubby' and have been trying to figure out why. Is it just because I don't have one of those? Or because it seems a bit demeaning? (After all, the word is almost exclusively used by women to refer to men, particularly the ones they are married to. Men never refer to themselves as a hubby... and are firmly discouraged from calling their wives 'wifey' or 'little woman' or well, what? wench?)

Well, the blog world appears full of women who like to mention their hubbies, so I had best refrain from criticism and recognize that my opposition to the term may have more to do with the sound of the word. It's the vowels, I think. I cringe also cringe at potty, bunny, sonny, chubby, tubby, tummy, cruddy, bloody...

Pat said...

Irregardless. I hear it a lot and wonder if it is even a word. How is it different than regardless?

Marti said...

It’s so easy for the adding of suffixes to get out of control. Why do people turn ‘orientation’ into ‘orientate’ instead of stripping the word back to ‘orient’? What about historic, and historical? Don’t ‘-ic’ and ‘-al’ do the same thing? Now and then you see it go the other way, someone reducing a word to a root where there isn’t one: I have heard the protégée of a mentor referred to as a ‘mentee’! (Why not a ‘Telemachus’? Too much of a mouthful, I guess.)