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Words and Phrases We Can Do Without From Now On…

“It is what it is”
This is one of those word clusters that seems to have an irrefutable meaning; after being spoken, it renders all further discussion closed. It presumes that it is understood and commonly agreed on what, in fact, is. That is the left out portion. Just what is it that is? And…says who?

“Yeah!”
If you are fond of using this sound bite as a form of praise whenever your child does just about anything, then you as a parent are probably an unintentional idiot. (And, conditioning your little precious to follow in your footsteps.) Enough has already been said about this toxic habit of raising children. If you don’t get it yet, and are open to some self-critical examination (no “yeah!” for your “yeah’s!”) search…”overly praising children.”

“Make a Difference” / “Making a Difference”
This falls in the under the unexamined embrace of the myth of progress, as in making the world a better place. Most of us would simply nod in assent that making a difference is something desirable to want to do. Upon examination, however, certain questions arise. What is progress? To what? From what? Says who! More deeply…Where are we going? From where? What for? Then if you can set yourself aside from the quotidian rush for a little while…Who am I, really? Or, more precisely, What am I? Having answered those questions (for the time constrained, simply do a search on “meaning of life.”) then come back to the notion of “making a difference.” If you then still want to make that difference, go ahead. God’s speed. It don’t make a difference, really. Do what you’re going to do. It is what it is. And whatever it is, yeah!

"At the end of the day"
People who toss this one out I believe do so to appear au courant and thoughtful. It is a mindless go to phrase for all the political pundits in the media. "After all is said and done" or "in the end" are two other  more complex expressions of the same idea. "At the end of the day" has a been of smart smugness, a phrase the anointed tend to use. Drop it, chief.

"That having been said . . . "

Usually followed with something exactly opposite, or different.

"Synergize", "Maximize", "Optimize"
When I was in advertising these were the words that peppered every marketing and advertising plan. I have heard and read my limit on those boosterish superlatives.

"Net, net"
After all is taken into account. We hear it less these days, but I once worked for a fellow in advertising who used it in virtually every fifth sentence, and I for one have had my fill.

"LOL"
We're wondering whether the folks who use that acronym are in fact really laughing out loud.

"Awesome"
Some many things are "awesome" these days there is no room left for ordinary and regular. Isn't that an "awesome" idea?

"Amazing" "Fantastic" "Incredible"
And just about any other superlative word used to merely emphasize one likes something or somebody in ordinary conversation. The Hollywood promoters have been using hyper-superlatives for years. There's a place for this, but mostly it's used in the service of putting asses in seats = dollars in pockets. Isn't that a fantastic thing to know?

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