Words From Which I Need a Break

March 22, 2011

Amazingly, the academic year is somehow almost over. Again. And at this busy time of year (yeah, about those updates), it has come to my attention that there are an awful lot of words out there that I don’t want to hear again for a long, long time. These are words that sound awesome, words that are repositories for a whole host of concepts, and if used cunningly, obscure the fact that you may or may not know what you’re talking about.

But it’s getting to the point where I feel ill using them. Sure, they’re part of the lingo, and they earn you points… but lately I’ve seen and heard them overused and misused to such an extent that I fear they’re triggering hives. So, without further ado…

Words I Would Like to Temporarily Banish… at Least Until my Immunity Returns

  1. Construct/construction (particularly if it’s a “cultural construct”)
  2. Rhetoric
  3. Discourse
  4. Ethos
  5. Socio-economic
  6. Gendered
  7. Interpretation
  8. Identity
  9. Verisimilitude
  10.  Meta-anything (meta-linguistic, meta-narrative, meta-cognition, etc.)
  11. Daring
  12. Authenticity
  13. Paradigm
  14. Class conflict
  15. Capitalist/capitalistic
  16. Marxist
  17. Manifest
  18. “Double-vision”
  19. Self-perception
  20. Personal growth
  21. Primal
  22. Inherent
  23. Ultimate/ultimately
  24. Innocence/Loss of Innocence

And, last but not least:

25. Thus

I’m not suggesting these words go into permanent exile. No, they serve their purposes. I just think they should enjoy a nice vacation somewhere, until their proper (and sparing) use is remembered and appreciated.

Sigh. Looking forward to spring… Ah well, here’s a cartoon I find extremely relevant right about now:

Image credit: http://www.sjsu.edu.






  1. LOL! I know exactly what you mean. Love the comic. I’ve used that in my blog, too. XD

  2. I had a roommate in college who believed that he’d get an A if he included a word that the teacher didn’t know in his essay. I told him that professors have dictionaries too.

    When I get verbiage such as what you listed from my students, I ask them to weed and prune.

  3. Loved this post! I would add not a specific word, but a statement: I’d love to see the death of acronyms. Working for the government like I do, I see way too many, and rarely do they include explanations. I now respond to agencies by telling them they’ll get a response from me when they can spell words out. The most ridiculous one I came across was during a flood event when a disaster organization called wanting to know if I’d like them to send out TATER or TATER TOT. Honest! true acronym. After I got up off the floor from laughing, I asked if they could include hotdogs. Found out it stood for some sort of emergency response vehicle, and a smaller vehicle. Oh, and again, exposure to the government means exposure to way too many documents worded just like the Calvin comic here.

  4. I follow your construct, Arvik.

    Sadly, rhetoric and discourse are intertwined in the ethos as well as in the socio-economic, gendered, interpretation of identity.

    Verisimilitude and meta-linguistic narrative have taken the place of daring authenticity in a paradigm of class conflict.

    Both capitalists and Marxist manifest a “Double-vision” which causes them to lose their self-perception, thwarting their personal growth in favor of a primal, inherent need to reclaim the ultimate loss of innocence which arrives thusly.

    I share your pain
    And will refrain
    From adding further
    Insult to injury


    • Bravo! I must say, I’m impressed… Thanks, I needed that. 😀

  5. […] recent post, Words From Which I Need A Break, included the following 25 words which Arvik felt should be granted […]

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