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Top 10 Most Irritating Phrases of the English Language

In his book Damp Squid: The English Language Laid Bare, Jeremy Butterfield outlined the top 10 most irritating phrases of the English language. (Why damp squid?)

... the book's author Jeremy Butterfield says that many annoyingly over-used expressions actually began as office lingo, such as 24/7 and "synergy".

Other phrases to irritate people are "literally" and "ironically", when they are used out of context.

Mr Butterfield said: "We grow tired of anything that is repeated too often – an anecdote, a joke, a mannerism – and the same seems to happen with some language."

Here they are:


  1. At the end of the day

  2. Fairly unique

  3. I personally

  4. At this moment in time

  5. With all due respect

  6. Absolutely

  7. It's a nightmare

  8. Shouldn't of

  9. 24/7

  10. It's not rocket science

Link to Telegraph article | Damp Squid review on The Bookbag

Can you at this moment in time come up with a fairly unique sentence that contains all ten? While it's not rocket science, at the end of the day, I personally can't!


Newest 5
Newest 5 Comments

"Be proactive", "be proactive"!

Means: Work a lot, when your boss doesn't ask
you so, so he doesn't get troubles and doesn't
even remark that there was a problem and then
he ask you: What you did the whole damn day?
:-)
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'Basically'...talk with any Indian and he'll start Basically I'm from Punjab...blah blah blah...basically till he basically drops dead. Hate it.
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Let's add;

"That's how I roll"

"How's that working for you ?"

"Good luck with that"

And the most annoying cry of the ignorant and self-absorbed;

"Whatever"
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