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Pet Peeves on Overcooked Cliches

Marion Charatan

Posted on August 15, 2021 19:59

3 users

Too many people have speech habits that irritate me. If I hear 'been there, done that' one more time, I will have to restrain myself from running down the street screaming my head off.

Usually, I am pretty tolerant and fairly easygoing. I don't like to pretend to be a literary snob or so high and mighty that I'm better than anyone. I love learning and expanding my horizons-- and take every opportunity I can to learn something new.

So, why is it that far too many times, folks use the same regurgitated phrases over and over again? What's happened to originality? OK, then, here's an example: 

I was attending a Zoom meeting. The lecturer, a very dynamic and intelligent woman, made the interjection, 'that said,' before she continued on with her lecture to the attendees. My hair and toes curled! 

'That said' is a phrase I'd be very happy never to hear again!! It is used way too often and I've noticed that people often inject the words incorrectly. Why couldn't 'in spite of that' or more original words be substituted? To hear 'that said' recited multiple times every day just gets in my craw--talk about superfluous filler! 

As mentioned in the summary above, 'been there, done that' is an irritating phrase as well. The point of saying that is to indicate you are adept in a particular area. So what's wrong with stating, "I am seasoned or experienced" in whatever the topic of conversation was? 

Another pet peeve of mine is the constant use of the word 'like' before every sentence--"'Like,' I meant to get to work earlier but 'like,' it just didn't happen because the traffic was so challenging." This is an incorrect use of the verb like. 

And now to the phrase 'to be honest.' Would you rather be dishonest with what you're about to share? This could indicate to a listener that you are talking truthfully, but is it really necessary to add these words to your sentence? One should assume a speaker has truthful intentions. Perhaps when people constantly use 'to be honest,' they have conflicted feelings about their own integrity (now I'm really playing dime store psychologist). Nevertheless, it bugs me to hear it.

Here's another BIG one that gets to me--'my bad.' What the heck is that?! Why don't you say 'my good'? At least that sounds positive. The other day, a stranger knocked on my door. I knew he had come to the wrong house because he asked for a neighbor. I politely told him that individual lives next door. In a very pleasant tone, he answered, "So sorry Ma'am, my bad!" I bit my lip so I didn't come back with a retort that could be viewed as unpleasant--so I answered "No problem." YIKES!! Now, I'm doing it. It is a problem when every other word out of someone's mouth is 'no problem.' 

The point of all this (yep, there is a point beneath the murk) is that I want to be more creative in my communication and try to keep away from cliches because I am as guilty as anyone else is-- and that is a problem!!

Marion Charatan

Posted on August 15, 2021 19:59

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Source: Forbes

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