I know it is being pedantic but I have realised particularly in the last few months that there are a number of sayings and phrases commonly used that I have decided I cannot use anymore. This is not as easy as it sounds, they are on the tip of my tongue. But I have a rationale so I am trying to teach myself to not use them. I will go through them and explain why.
I cannot believe in luck, it is to me illogical. I don’t believe in the concept of fate, that our lives are pre-determined by some greater being/cosmic force, so I cannot believe in luck for the same reasons. I cannot use good or bad luck as excuses for things that have or haven’t happened, to me things happen because people make them happen and a series of consequences. Yet every day I see someone wish someone or me luck. My problem with this one is that I want to pass on the sentiment used by saying “Good luck” but I now refuse to use those words. It has become “I hope it goes well” but it does seem to lack the oomph that good luck has. So any suggestions for rephrasing that saying would be gratefully accepted.
This one is also illogical and can be applied to all such sayings, yet I still find I have to stop myself from doing it. Let’s be honest unless you believe in some kind of luck fairy or magic wood monster, then touching wood does absolutely nothing. I don’t even know where the saying came from (and am too lazy/not interested to google it). Even as recently as this week I have found myself going to do it, a creature of habit I guess. But yet again saying “Yeah I hope so.” seems to have less impact as the act of saying and actually touching wood. But I think this is due to how common the sayings are.
“God knows.” “Thank God.” You get the message. Sayings with God in them. Now I realise that many people I chat with online use them out if habit, but the pedant in me cringes when I know they are atheists. They don’t “Thank God” or care/believe that “God knows”, they don’t even believe he/she/it exists, neither do I. But I know it is that they are used in every day language, people use such sayings for their implied meanings not their literal ones. I know it is a little ridiculous that it has come my bugbear, but it has. I don’t point it out to people when they use them, but I do have an grumble to myself.
Go to Hell
This one needs little explanation. As an atheist I do not believe in heaven or hell, so how can I want to tell someone to go to an imaginary place? I know it is the idea behind the saying that is implied “Go to some horrific torturous place where you will burn for eternity”, but if I were being logical and true to my believes I should say just that, for this one I do find that “Fuck off” replaces it quite nicely. And if I am in a social situation where fuck off is inappropriate, then I shouldn’t really be telling them to go to hell either, as it could also be judged as a little rude.
“Is” surely you mean “are”? Yes my pedantry knows no bounds. This one I don’t like just because the grammar sounds and feels wrong. “Eggs” is a plural so surely “are” should be used? I agree with the sentiment behind the saying it is based in logic, and yes I know that it is a jocular misquotation, but it irritates me.
I know there are many more sayings yo which I apply this logic, but they are difficult to think of when I haven’t seen them. I am not judging anyone who does use these sayings, merely pointing out that they are to me, illogical. I am slowly teaching myself to not use them, although it is not easy they are, as I said before, on the tip of the tongue just waiting for use. I’m not sure it makes me a better critical thinker at all to actually consider the meaning of what I am saying before I say it. But it is a habit I have got into. Please feel free to add any sayings you can’t stand in the comments section and of course tell me your thoughts on the matter.
Thanks for reading.