If you know me, you know that I love words. I love hearing new words and mulling over an interesting turn of phrase and finding ways to use it myself. I’ve recently been bombarded by the term “geek out”. It seems everywhere I go, I either hear it or read it somewhere. A 2005 NY Times article explains that “[T]o geek out on something means to immerse yourself in its details to an extent that is distinctly abnormal – and to have a good time doing it.” Another definition found here explains that to geek out is “[T]o temporarily enter techno-nerd mode while in a non-hackish context, for example at parties held near computer equipment. Especially used when you need to do or say something highly technical and don’t have time to explain: ‘Pardon me while I geek out for a moment.'”
It’s nice to finally have a term, a verbal phrase, to describe what I’ve tended to do all along. I have a passionate personality and when I find something I love, I cultivate a knowledge of it at a rapid pace. I’m pretty sure it runs in the family because my mother and brother do this as well. NASA history is one of my favorite subjects to “geek out” on (as well as a couple of TV shows), military history is my brother’s and the JFK assassination is my mother’s. Ryan tends to geek out on stereotypical subjects like computers, Star Wars and gaming (particularly Final Fantasy XI…the game I call the “other woman.”)
In a similar vein, there are words and phrases and uses of words that irritate the life out of me. Here is a quick list of the some of my biggest offenders (this is in no way a comprehensive list).
Nouns as verbs: I’m aware that this sounds contradictory considering my previous declaration of love for the term “geek out”, however, this hatred primarily pertains to terms such as “to gift” and “to author”. When I hear someone say something like “They gifted us with this beautiful sink” or “He authored the book, Men Who Improperly Use Nouns as Verbs and The Women Who Love Them” I want to reach out and slap the taste out of the mouth that uttered that jacked up use of a noun.
Amazing: You hear this primarily on inane television dating shows…”She’s this amazing girl and we had an amazing first date at ended up in the hot tub and we had an amazing time but she’s really not the one for me.” Oh.My.Gosh. FIND ANOTHER ADJECTIVE! The overuse of this fairly innocuous adjective (by the idiots of the world) has unfortunately relegated it to the ranks of insincerity.