I’m Not Very Fond Of (Re-Visited)

20 June 2009

Many moons ago, I wrote a couple of posts here about things I’m not very fond of . . . titled that way because as a child I wasn’t allowed to say that I hated something, usually a particular food, so my sister and I decided that to say we weren’t fond of it would convey the right message to our parents without actually breaking the rules.

But here, it was words that I referred to.  I’m REALLY not fond of the word “Lifestyle” (as in “Sydney Lifestyle”, “Lifestyle Choices” etc etc).  I’m not at all fond of “Values” (as in “Family Values”).

And I’ve been particularly irked lately by the use of the word “Decade”.  Newsreaders use it all the time and I’ve no idea why.  I’ve heard that “It’s been nearly three-quarters of a decade etc ” (translated as 7 years) and  “Almost two and a half decades”, (which meant 23 years apparently),  It isn’t even a short form.  “Almost two and a half decades” is 8 syllables.  “23 years” is 4.

I think they believe it gives their report some sort of gravitas, but it doesn’t – it just makes it less precise.   Is “almost two and a half decades” 23 years, 24 years, or somewhere between 24 and 25 years? A decade is a precise period of time.  Almost a decade is utterly imprecise. 

I think I’ll get a few more of these off my chest over the next few days.  After the week I’ve had, I feel the need to rant! 




  1. AND what about the way in which many broadcsters pronounce “decade”? They often say “dee-CAYED”, which means that they don’t understand its root in the Latin for 10 – “DEC-em”, with a short “e” and the emphasis on the first syllable. I’m getting quite intolerant as I age!

  2. Irritating +++

  3. A couple of years ago when banks were handing out money to anyone, our bank manager yet again said that we should buy investment property . I said no I didn’t want that much debt . He looked at me knowingly and said “oh you want a lifestyle” . Huh?

  4. I don’t watch TV so I don’t know if this has spread to my corner of the English-speaking world, but I’m sure I’d be peeved as well if I heard it. I’ve got a few other things I’m not very fond of, too!

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