Andrew Taubman of Queens Park remembers that in the 1960s, his “father gave some visiting Americans a bag of passionfruit (C8), as an iconic Australian food then virtually unknown in the USA. One wrote to him later to thank him for the interesting and novel fruit, but said that after you peeled them and threw the seeds away, there wasn’t much left to eat!”
Patrick St George of Goulburn can see a particularly good reason for washing passionfruit before use (C8). “Mark Griffiths and others might like to try making some passionfruit skin jam. It is purple, sounds a bit strange, but it is really delicious.”
One last A word peeve (C8), passed on by Rhoda Silber of Manly. “My brother in Johannesburg nominates his word peeve as ‘artisanal’. He says so many people use it there, to describe everything from a sandwich to a bookcase.”
Now that we have apparently exhausted the hated words commencing with A (C8), Terry O’Brien of North Parramatta asks if it is “time to move on to ‘basically’?”
Today’s most popular word peeve (C8) is, like, a generational thing. Flora Fisk of Bowral is “like, not liking the ubiquitous like.” Colleen Behl of Kiama observes that “it has become such a habit for people under 30 to say ‘like’ in conversation they don’t realise how often they say it. ‘Like’ seems to have replaced ‘you know’.” Mark Roufeil of Wollongong wonders if the overuse of some words could be gender-specific. “Females under 30 precede every verb and adjective with ‘like’, whereas young males overuse other words not suitable for print. Is this a connection mode within the separate gender groups that’s ‘same, same, but different’? ”
Another addition to the odd yet overused phrases collection (C8). Brian Barry of Port Macquarie often wonders “what is really meant by the comment ‘I can’t wait’. What will the speaker do instead?” Bill Thomson of Bargo shares the concern, particularly given its overuse by morning television presenters. “They must all spend every minute of the day in a permanent state of anticipation, which must bring on terrible internal bodily function problems.”
With the current discussion on words that are overused being so popular, Russell Hill from Hobart would “like to suggest bringing back a term used many years ago. When asked, ‘how are you?’, try the reply, ‘everything is tickety-boo’.” If it’s good enough for Cleaver Greene, it’s definitely worth giving it a burl.
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