2013 list of Banished Words

Michigan’s Lake Superior State University recently posted their 38th annual Banished Words List for 2013. The list was first created as a publicity stunt to get some recognition for this small university by the University’s Public Relations Director, W. T. Rabe on New Year’s Day 1976. It’s continued popularity is evident by the numerous nominations received annually and the dozens of news outlets that report about it New Year’s Day.

Here’s the 2013 list:

Fiscal Cliff ~ Kick the can down the road ~ Double Down ~ Job Creators/Creation ~ Passion/Passionate ~ YOLO (you only live once) ~ Spoiler Alert ~ Bucket List ~ Trending ~ Super Food ~ Boneless Wings ~ Guru

It’s kind of ironic that the news outlets reporting on these banished words are the reason the majority of them are on the list in the first place with Fiscal Cliff being the most overused and despised word of the bunch!  Trending is my vote for second most annoying word because of its overuse on one of my favorite TV shows, The Voice. Christina Milian’s (the sixth banana on the show) lack of verbal skills has her using this phrase way too often! She alone has made me cringe whenever I hear that word. Then there is Bucket List, an expression that I myself have overused this past year. I apologize to anyone that I’ve irritated when I’ve uttered it. The rest of the list I’ve either never heard of or never noticed enough to pester me.

There are a few words I wish I had put up for nomination, and maybe I will for 2014! The one that instantly springs to mind is Breaking News.  Has there ever been a two-word phrase that has lost all credibility and impact on U.S. news programs than this once powerful statement? Now it comes across the crawlers, on once respected news outlets like CNN, continuously announcing such Breaking News as the impregnation of a Kardashian, the arrest of some starlet or occasionally a real breaking story.

My other despised word is Vintage. Ugh, I hate this one. What once was sold in resale shops, antique stores and flea markets as junk, an antiquity or just plain old is now Vintage. I think I first began to loath it when I would be on the hunt for an old, smelly book to add to my collection and store owners would ask me if I collected ‘vintage’ books for decorating purposes. Decorating purposes!! No, I actually buy books to read, not to use them to brighten up my house, or match the color of my throw pillows. I’ve come across this book attitude quite often and thus my (obvious!) dislike of this word.  Phew, I feel better now 🙂

Do you have any words you wish you could banish?

Lake Superior State University has a complete list of past banished words on their website. It’s like a word time capsule! (and breaking news is already on there!!) Here are just a few.

Macho ~ Closure ~ Cult Classic ~ Factoid ~ Energy Crisis ~ Joe Sixpack ~ Organic ~ Wardrobe Malfunction ~ Whatsup? ~ User Friendly ~ Ripped from the Headlines


2 thoughts on “2013 list of Banished Words

  1. Not so much a word but a misuse, I *hate* it when news shows report that someone is critically ill after a car crash. No. They’re not ill, they’re injured. They didn’t catch a car crash or come down with it like flu. Grrr. /pedant 🙂

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