I have fallen behind in my duties to maintain the Banned List, my dictionary of prohibited clichés and jargon.
The book is available for just £4.67 on Kindle. I have published updates erratically on Independent Blogs and on Independent Voices since 2011, but I have kept miscreants guessing by refusing to compile them all in one place.
Anyway, the time has come to add another 10 words and phrases to the Banned List:
• Helm as a verb. Thanks to Kevin Fredericks, the Independent’s sub-editing supremo, who has issued an internal circular.
• Drinkery. Eatery is already on the Banned List, but Fredericks alerts me to a new horror that is upon us.
• Foodie. And I seem to have left out foodies.
• Powerhouse. Nominated by Michael Crick.
• Apartheid for things that aren’t apartheid. Nominated by Ed West in a job lot nearly a year ago but I’ve only just got round to it.
• Othered, othering. Ed West.
• Social cleansing. Also nominated by Ed West, but a usage to which I have long objected. I think it is tasteless to compare cuts in housing benefit to ethnic cleansing, the semi-genocide practised by Slobodan Milosevic in former Yugoslavia. The phrase was first used by Jeremy Corbyn.
• Surface, transitive verb, as used by Twitter. Nominated by Martin McDonald.
• Sync. As in, “sync up” or “Fassbender latest name synced to biopic”, Guardian. Thanks to Della Mirandola.
• Towards a… Or, “In which I…” Nominated by Tom Doran.
In other news, the Queen becomes the longest-serving British monarch today and I pay tribute in The Independent. If I could point out that the reason I didn’t know they were the Sex Pistols was that they were playing as The Spots, which, 38 years later, I discover stood for Sex Pistols On Tour Secretly.
• And finally, thanks to Moose Allain for this:
“Just been informed that my son’s school currently has an acting head of school. I have to say, she was very convincing.”Reuse content