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What word or phrase bothers you the most?

Written By: daveski on October 10, 2009 3 Comments

I noticed that Language Log recently had a post reporting on the results of the Marist Poll’s question, “What word or phrase bothers you the most?” And, noting the fact that they noted the fact that this was a multiple-choice poll (all in English of course) with all five options pre-selected, and the fact that there was only a pool of 900-something people selected to represent the whole of the United States, I thought it would be fun to add a few more open response answers to the fray.

So,

What word or phrase bothers you the most?

And

Why?

Oh, and by the way, if you want to save yourself some Googling, here’s a list of “Least Favorite Words” from eloquentmusic on Wordie, and a similar question posed on Yahoo! Answers.

Feel free to teach us all a bit about your other language(s) too and write in or about words in another language!

Looking forward to some, er, annoyed responses…

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3 Responses to “What word or phrase bothers you the most?”

  1. Doug on: 10 October 2009 at 12:32 pm

    Scrumptious.

  2. Usree Bhattacharya on: 10 October 2009 at 7:22 pm

    Here’s a list of ENGLISH words that annoy me (can’t contain myself to just one): maverick, “ecology,” socialist (depending on the speaker), “war on terror,” “native speaker”+”non-native speaker,” “pwned” (never sure how to pronounce it!), “Asian” (when it’s used to describe only parts of Asia), “literate”/”illiterate”, “West,” “civilized,” British “chips” (for fries), “truth” (is there any such thing?), “homely,” “outraging the modesty of a woman” (which is how legally, until recently, rape was defined in India). More, but I’ll have to come back to it. 🙂

  3. daveski on: 12 October 2009 at 11:52 am

    It’s interesting to me that these words look like they’re all tied to contexts of use and not the sounds of a language per se. When I think about my favorite and least favorite words in languages OTHER than English, I often associate those feelings with the actual sound of the word. Soft sounds, harsh sounds etc. But in English (or whatever language/s are strongest for that person) it’s about the connotations, the memories associated with the word.

    Why is “scrumptious” so annoying, Doug? And Usree, I’m curious about “chips”… 🙂

    (and funny nobody’s mentioned the Marist Poll’s “overwhelming” finding! surprised

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