A Surfeit of Words

For many years our Great Leader (Dale) used current events as a springboard to fun blog entries. Unfortunately the news these days is so depressing that it’s hard for me to get excited about using it as inspiration.  Until today, that is.

Merriam-Webster’s “Official Scrabble Players Dictionary” has added 300 words, including a two-letter word that people have been waiting years to use: OK.

“For a living language, the only constant is change,” said Peter Sokolowski, editor at large for Merriam-Webster. “The Official Scrabble Players Dictionary evolves to keep up with English as it is used today.”

Some of the others words include: twerk, beatdown, sriracha, bitcoin, emoji, sheeple, yowza, macaron, zomboid, frowny and puggle.

I know, I know – English only got where it is by changing over the centuries, but I still get eerie shivers down my spine when I hear words like “frowny”.

What words give you the creeps?


38 thoughts on “A Surfeit of Words”

  1. People here mispronounce scuttlebutt. They say scuttle bug instead.

    I try to use “cheque ” instead of “check” since I think it is more informative about what I am referring to . I tried it in my last agenda for my regulatory board, and the darn secretary changed the spelling!


  2. No word currently creeps me out, although I often smile at the way words go in and out of fashion. The word everyone is obsessed with now is “pivot.” Football broadcasters keep telling us a runner pivots (ie changes direction). Political commentators love calling attention to moments a politician pivots (ie changes positions on policy).

    I’m mildly annoyed when people misuse the word “reticent.” It used to refer to someone who is quiet, someone who dislikes speaking up. Now people think it is a more elegant word for expressing reluctance. “Joan was reticent to shave her legs.” So many people use the word this way that I suppose the meaning is changing, and perhaps dictionaries will soon reflect that.


  3. Rise and Shine Baboons,

    I have a few lexiconical irritants: Orientate (orient)
    Road to hoe (Row to hoe), normalcy.
    And recently “News” (not new—just speculation and yammer)

    Yesterday the “news” itself irritated me—the “news” was nothing at all. I got to the gym in the morning. The gym is the only place I see or am aware of cable news. Generally, I find cable news not only depressing as VS notes, but obsessive. Up on the TVs on MSNBC, CNN, and FOX was a split screen with a talking head, a picture of a parking spot at the Whitehouse, and some running video of Rod Rosenstein getting into a black SUV, over and over and over. The banners said he was about to be fired, so there the networks displayed for the entire time of my workout, this empty parking spot where apparently, the black SUV would park with Mr. Rosenstein in it, awaiting his firing. By the time I left it was still displayed (over an hour by then) and nothing happened. Later in the day I learned nothing ever happened.

    Why would this be considered “news?” Most people who watched a parking spot for over an hour with a camera would be considered stalkers.

    Liked by 2 people

  4. We watch the movie “The Music Man” often and in that, the Mayor’s wife uses the word “reticent” often. And we laugh at that. “Oh yes. I am reticent!”.
    “You have a dentist appointment”…that will creep me out!
    I don’t like it when people use “Qoupon” instead of “coupon”.


  5. A word I’ve been tracking is “gal” or “gals.” I think it used to be a countrified version of girl. “Gal” used to be a western or rural word for girl. There is a musical set in the west called Guys N Gals. Now I here it often, and it isn’t currently considered a country word.

    My guess is that this is a response to feminist critique’s of the word girl when used to describe a sexually mature female. Some feminists wanted us to say “woman” even when referring to a female of 15. For many folks, “woman” just doesn’t fit when applied to a young female. I think “gals” is a word used to avoid the politics of language.

    Liked by 2 people

        1. This use of “guys” is the standard now on YouTube. People who have YouTube channels routinely say things like, “I wanted to make a video to show you guys what China is really like.”


      1. We went out to an upscale restaurant for our anniversary a few years ago. The server asked, “What are you guys having?” I answered, “The lady and I are not having anything yet because we have yet to order.” A wasled subtlety.

        Liked by 1 person

  6. I watch a Youtube channel of a young man down in Texas. He’s a welder / mechanic and fixes old tractors. Well, “Fixes” them. He makes up words by adding “–ify” to most things.
    “Let’s repairify this part.” “Let’s assemblify this.”
    I haven’t decided yet if it’s funny or annoying.

    Liked by 2 people

  7. I bristle when people misuse “literally,” and people DO misuse it almost as often as they get it right. Here’s an example: “If Mom hears about this she’s gonna literally kill me.” For people who speak loosely, the word “literally” is a crude sort of amplifier that they toss into sentences with no regard for what the word really means.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Well – I ended up in a gathering this afternoon where I believe that every single corporate America buzzword got. “Ideate”, “actualize”, “collaborate”, “incentivize” (I particularly dislike this one. And a new buzz phrase at our office is “power of the moment”. AARRRGGGHHHHHH!

    Liked by 1 person

  9. I’m a little put off by the word “optics” when used to describe something that just doesn’t look good. I suppose it’s a useful word, as far as it goes, but I just don’t like the audiologics of it.


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