Some phrases hack me off. I’m not alone in this observation either. When someones says thank you, your response should be “you’re welcome” not “no problem“. Doing business with someone shouldn’t be considered a problem to solve, rather it’s something for which you should be grateful. If it’s truly a difficult situation or circumstance such as, “You just saved me from being hit by that car!” Now you can respond with “no problem”. That’s an act of grace not one of appreciation. That’s the basic distinction between “no problem” and “you’re welcome.” Since when is taking my money a problem?
The classic line in which almost everyone says upon completion of business is, “have a nice day!” Sometimes, in an attempt to seem vaguely interested in wishing someone well the person might say, “Have a day”, or “Have a good one”. Can you be anymore vague? The British have been making fun of this throw away phrase for years saying things like, “be seeing you” or more commonly now, “cheers.” I rather like “cheers.” After all it permits you to say something which terminates interaction without really being as committed as “have a nice day”.
Of course English is a dynamic language. Many older phrases which are still with us come from other languages. Since English is a language rooted in several others, that comes as no surprise. I take exception with some of the following words in which they are misused.
- Ask (as a noun)
- very unique (unique already means this)
- not gonna lie (so up until this time you probably were?)
- like (not everything is a comparison, so stop using ‘like’ in almost every sentence)
- sustainable & eco-friendly (this is almost as useful as ‘all-natural’)
- all options are on the table (which usually is political double-talk for, we can’t come up with a plan or know how to predict the outcome)
- bucket list (so you’ve saved up your time and money to do some crazy things which appear to now become a priority)
- channel your inner _______ (child, grumpy, transvestite, what? This is almost as useful as getting your groove on)
- Giving 110% (Anything over 100% isn’t possible. You can’t give or call forth more than you possess. If you are putting forth more effort than before, it’s because you weren’t giving 100% or you just improved.)
Simple phrases aren’t the only thing that get recycled.
- Stop the Insanity: 5 Words You Need to Stop Saying (curiouserediting.wordpress.com)
- Top 5 Words to Delete from Your Vocabulary (everydaypowerblog.com)
- “No problem”: Yes, it’s a BIG problem (CBS News)