Most Annoying Phrase—“Aha Moment”
This phrase has been popularized by the woman who—finally believing all the hype about herself, has launched an impressive attempt at world domination — Oprah Winfrey. Her obnoxious and omnipresent phrase, “Aha Moment” takes the Susie this year. Meant to describe a moment of self-awareness and realization of something obvious, yet profoundly illuminating, Oprah spouts this phrase not only several times per show but throughout her day: upon finally deciding that she prefers creamy peanut butter to crunchy, realizing that waterproof mascara actually is harder to remove, as well as finally grasping the concept that one’s ass does, indeed, look bigger in a tight skirt. Here is your Susie, Oprah. Aha!
Most Annoying Abbreviation—“BFF” There is a rumor that this was first used in an episode of “Friends” sometime in the 90s but it has grown in popularity thanks to the shorthand of texting which, in itself, is indicative of the approaching apocalypse. Meaning “Best Friend Forever” it is used, literally, by everyone everywhere and, literally, makes me want to stop speaking English, literally, forever.
Hands-Down, Bar-None, Most Overused and, Therefore, Misused Word in the English Language—“Awesome”
A favorite of students of all ages but rapidly spreading to the vocabularies of everyone (except me) this word has been given tons of exposure. Awe is as an overwhelming feeling of reverence, admiration or fear produced by that which is grand, sublime or extremely powerful. Correct usage: The bush burning in the desert that caused Moses’ hair to turn snow white immediately upon seeing it, was awesome. Or: The first astronaut ever to view the blue marble of earth from outer space, commented to his companion, “Woo-hoo, that is truly awesome!” Incorrect usage: This turkey sandwich is awesome. In today’s world, however, there is one—and only one—legitimate use of this word and that is specifically when referring to how Cher has the chutzpah to wear dresses made of fishnet, in public, at the age of 64. End of story.
If Anyone Ever Shouts This One More Time in the Bowling Alley Upon Achieving a Strike, I am Planning on Taking Hostages With Absolutely No Warning Other Than This Minor Paragraph in This Obscure Column—“Booyah”
No explanation needed.
The Rarely Awarded Double Susie—The Kardashians
Even though this year’s Susies are focused on vocabulary and usage, I am awarding the entire Kardashian Family, which has surpassed the Lohans, Palins, Spears, Osbornes and Gosselins for vapid idiocy, the coveted Double Susie. The first is for speaking the language in the whiniest little voices ever picked up by a microphone. Rewarded with reality shows, perfume endorsements, large sums of money to wear clothing-designer’s labels and attend gala events at which they are photographed and admired, they are getting part B of the Double Susie for being the smartest family ever because they have made millions being idiots. You have to admire that.
Most Annoying Name of an Entertainer—Ke$ha. Once you have read it, there is little need to elaborate. Even more annoying is that Ke$ha is making lots of $ without ever having learned how to use the letter ‘s’. I re$t my ca$e.
The English language is, or used to be, a beautiful thing. Richly nuanced and robustly textured, it stood the test of time and trends until just a short while ago, when flying fingers on tiny keyboards, ego-driven talk-show hosts, singers with stupid names and bowlers with limited vocabulary decided they knew better. The Susies have taken these linguistic offenders to task. Until next year’s winners are announced, I wish you all an awe$ome new year.