Sunday, January 01, 2012

Banished Words for 2012

Happy New Year, everyone! I’m not going to bore you with my resolutions, which are pretty much the same as they were last year, so I thought I’d start the year off with a fun blog.

In case you haven’t seen it in the newspapers, Lake Superior State University has come up with a list of twelve words or phrases that should be banished in 2012, due to overuse or downright misuse. LSSU acquired this list by seeking nominations, and responses came from far and wide. So, be warned: if you choose to use any of these words in your writing this year, do so at your own peril!

The most nominated word is “amazing”, which probably won’t surprise you, because frankly, it’s both overused and misused a great deal. The other nominated words are:

baby bump
shared sacrifice
occupy (fill in the city of your choice)
blowback (often used by corporate types to mean reaction)
man cave
the new normal
pet parent (I wasn’t familiar with this one)
win the future (especially common in American politics, I’m told)
trickeration (come on, now. Is that even a word?)
ginormous (a favorite of my daughter’s when she was in her early teens a decade ago)
thank you in advance (I’ve never been fond of that either)

You can read some of the voters’ comments at

THE OPPOSITE OF DARK, for iphones, iPads, and iPodTouch at, Kindle at and in paperback at



1 comment:

Pat Bertram said...

I'd never heard of "man cave" until just the other day, and it sure raised my hackles!! I agree with all of them except "the new normal." As someone who is living a new normal, I can attest that sometimes there is no other phrase to describe the situation, but it should only be used in dire times, such as the death of a much loved mate. People think you should get back to normal, and you are normal -- it's just a new normal.