Words That Make Me Go ‘Aargh’!

I love words. They are my friends and tools of my trade.

However, there are certain words that make me die inside when I hear them. I am not judging anyone who uses these words (well, not all of them) but I just cannot stand them.

You have my permission to hunt me down if I ever use these words in a serious manner.


What on earth happened to make the world use this word incorrectly?

Every time you say literally when something isn’t literal, a dictionary dies, not literally.

Imagine being an English teacher and hearing teenagers often using this word incorrectly. Even worse, when they told you they were being ironic *banged head against desk a lot when teaching and wished she could have done likewise to her pupils*.


Words That Make Me Go Aragh - ironyThere’s nothing wrong with the word, I just have an issue with those who use it incorrectly.

Alanis Morissette has a bloody lot to answer for. Love, your song isn’t irony. You just offered a lot of issues where people had really bad luck.

I saw a trainee English teacher give a lesson on irony, using this song once. She was teaching my class. I cursed her for months as I had to undo the damage.


Reality television, it’s your fault.

The Husband and I sound a vocal buzzer whenever we hear this word. I love that he hates it too. We can be grumpy gits together.

Reality television contestants; you didn’t go on a journey. You ate bugs in a jungle, you lived in a house with a bunch of buffoons for weeks, or you warbled a song every week.

Get your boots on and get walking. That’s a journey. Please don’t come back.


Words That Make Me Go Aragh - moistThe sound of it makes me want to take a shower.

It sounds filthy. It often is.

Hearing a weather report about the moist air makes me pity the broadcaster.

I know other things can be moist but let’s be honest, we’re all thinking about certain parts of our anatomy or the undies that conceal them. Right?


Vulgar because what it refers to in such a derogatory manner.


A swear word I love to hate.

It sounds horrible and looks horrible, that’s why I didn’t want to write it.

Every time I hear it, it makes me flinch.


America, this one is your fault.

Words That Make Me Go Aragh - pantiesEvery time I read an American novel which has the word panties in it, I snigger. It sounds like something a kid would say because they’re too embarrassed to use other words for their undies.

It’s even funnier when it’s in a sex scene. As soon as panties are removed, you’ve lost this reader.

How a woman is seduced by a man saying he wants to get into her panties is beyond me.

I love that in the UK we have a plethora of words for these things: knickers, undercrackers, grundies, pants, knick-knacks, undergarments, underpants, briefs, bloomers, drawers, smalls, undies…

Take that, America but don’t get your panties in a knot.


Sorry America, you’re up again.

What is this obsession with wanting to close everything? Admittedly The Husband gets annoyed with my penchant for wanting doors closed because of draughts but closing life stuff isn’t a biggie for me.

Therapy has a lot to answer for. Everything needs to end and be closed. We must seek closure.

I’m shutting the door on this one.


There’s nothing wrong with this word in its literal sense. It does what it needs to.

I dislike it because I’ve used it eleventy billion times in my novel and am currently culling it.

Making Love

Words That Make Me Go Aragh - making loveBit of a cheat as they are two words but this is my post, so there.

This makes me laugh every time I hear it. It’s a bit like the panties thing, which is usually used by those who also say ‘making love’.

I snigger like a repressed teen whenever I read or hear someone say they want to make love to someone. Where on earth did this come from, pardon the pun?

You do not make love when you have sex. You make babies, make someone tingle, make someone happy, make someone get riddled with STDs…

You make love by falling in it, being in it and keeping it going. This may involve sex.


You’ve already got disgusting images in your head just from reading that word, haven’t you?

Let’s just move on before one of us vomits.


The word alone doesn’t bother me. It’s when someone decides to punctuate their sentences with it rather than other words, commas and full stops that I lose my shit, e.g. ‘I was like walking down town like and like this girl like looked at me funny like and I stared her out like because she was like such a bitch like.’

I do not like.


Words That Make Me Go Aragh - superAnother word that isn’t too bad on its own, although in England if you say something is super, you’ve probably just emerged from a Famous Five novel.

It’s when people put super in front of things that I feel a bit stabby, e.g. ‘She is super beautiful’, ‘I am super sad’ and ‘That was super fast’.

Writers are told not to use very or really too often. It appears the world has tried to compensate by using super instead.

Not cool or super.

Over to You. What Words Make You Go Aargh?

Share your hated words and have a good vent.

Don’t get your panties in a wad though. Make love, not war, literally.

I’m super excited to hear from you.

*Curls into a foetal position and sobs*.

About Lisa Sell

Lisa Sell is a fiction writer. When she's not wrestling with words she can be found showing the love for chocolate, cheese, coffee, books, the cats, and the husband. Perhaps not in that order.

14 comments on “Words That Make Me Go ‘Aargh’!

  1. I hate the way “literally” is used! Drives me nuts. My daughter is really bad for it. I complain every time she does it. Lol

  2. Panties is creepy.

    I hate Americanisms that are redundant: burglarize. My house was burglarized. No your house was burgled.

    Directionality. The directionality of the burglarizers escape was to the East.
    No the direction of the burglars escape was to the east.

    Awesome. As in awe inspiring, like a divine presence! I’m guilty of this one but overuse makes it less of an endorsement.

    Moist or mucus don’t bother me too much.

    1. Ooh, you’ve really got my ‘horrible words’ radar going now, Joe!

      I hate awesome too. The only time it’s acceptable is when Bill and Ted, or the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles use it.

  3. I hate the word ‘befriend’. It doesn’t sound particularly positive, more insincere and deceitful.

  4. Have to agree with all of those words, and awesome, which is far too overused. My son hates the word ‘ought’ so I say it frequently, just to annoy him!
    The word I hate most in Italian is ‘cara’ (dear) – when someone calls you ‘dear’ like that, I just want to slap them. It’s so patronising!

  5. Unique, used wrongly, and in particular ‘quite unique’. I also agree with some of yours. The thought of moist air makes me want to hold my breath. Literally (actually not literally – I’m just messing with you now).

  6. Hahaha this is great and i so agree. Especially panties and making love- my bf says it to me to annoy me bc he knows lol. I definitely have words I cringe at but cant seem to think of them right now. 🙁

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