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Jack Applin


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Phrases that Annoy Jack

These are phrases that really tick me off. Some of them can, in some circumstances, be used innocently, but usually, they just annoy me.

One should be wary of using one of these phrases.

I hate to burst your bubble ...

Oh, I see. Here’s a list of assumptions:

  • You’re right.
  • I’m wrong.
  • I’m so darn wrong that you’re going to be kind and let me down gently.

You’d better be awfully sure of your position.

If you stop and think ...

So, you’re assuming that my opinion, which you disagree with, must be the product of a stray neuron in my brain firing, and not the product of much careful thought? Perhaps you should stop and think, buddy!

Well, at least you’re consistent.

Oh, thanks a lot—“at least”, indeed! It’s clear that you think that my position is a bunch of hooey, and you’re desperately trying to think of something nice to say about it.

I don’t care what you say ...

Then why are we talking? This phrase can only be used for those things that are truly a matter of personal taste, like chocolate vs. strawberry ice cream.

When you’re more experienced, you’ll agree ...

The last refuge of the desperate. Although, it is true, this one can be used for things that truly transcend logic. When I was twelve, I vowed that I would never like girls. Time changed my opinion.

You know what I mean!

No, I don’t. Apparently, you think that I’m questioning you out of sheer pickiness—you think that I know what you mean, and that I’m using this as an opportunity to make fun of your speaking skills, or your logic. Well, that’s not the case. I really have not the slightest idea what you’re talking about.

This phrase can, I admit, be used innocently. For example, people will sometimes use this when struggling for a word, as in:

You know, that crooked president that resigned ... the one that had Spiro Agnew for a vice president ... er, uh, well, you know what I mean!

This is a different use, and I have no problem with it.

You’ll have to agree ...

If you’ve got reasons, present them. If you think that the point is inarguable (e.g., the sky is blue) then merely state it. Don’t try to score dominance points by telling me what I have to do.

Last time I checked ...

Aw, baloney. You’ve never checked. Whenever anybody says “Last time I checked, God was still in the constitution”, this means that they’ve never read the constitution.

Or, perhaps I should just take a stress pill, and not let this all get to me so much.