I freely admit some of what I’m about to claim is biased, or even just my imagination.
This will separate the young from the more seasoned among Courier readers. The question is: can you name the nine parts of speech? For some of us, that question evokes memories of schooldays. For whippersnappers, it is often met merely with an inability to understand the question.
The English-speaking world is being polluted by hyperbole. Every day it is used a trillion times too often, if you see what I mean.
I was annoyed to read the thoughts of a political reporter who believed the prime minister had failed to barter a good Brexit agreement.
A few weeks ago, we discussed idiolects, the words and phrases you habitually use, and the favourite crutch-phrases and words that hold up the speech of those around us. You also have a familect. Or, more precisely, you take part in not just one familect but several.
Life was simpler in the 1970s. There were three TV channels and the only things that tweeted were birds.
A few weeks ago I became involved in the modern phenomena of podcasting. The podcast isn't about language, however, it discusses household tips. Nowadays the young would call them “life hacks”, but I refuse to countenance such a silly neologism.
Despite the plangent clamour that passes as Brexit debate, I am slightly surprised to find myself a little in love with one of the terms widely circulated in these past few weeks. I think the term “Team UK” is a very interesting construct.
Language is a tool, an implement. Used in a certain way you might even describe it as a weapon. It can shape the way you think, perhaps without you realising it is doing so.
This week I’m going to attempt to lose my job. I’m asking: is there anything more ridiculous than management-speak?