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Monday, October 11, 2010

Because This Is My Previous Life ~ Vocabulary

From the archives: 
As many regular readers may know, I love vocabulary. It's just one of my quirks (which incidentally is a GREAT WORD). What can I say, except that degree or not, I will always be an English major at heart. Unfortunately, there are times when vocabulary can make you look like a real jerk. For instance, if you are arguing with someone who is shall we say vocabulary challenged and you tell them that you 'acquiesce on a certain point, chances are you are going to come off looking like a snobbish, condescending jerk. You know they don't know what it means. They know that you know that they don't know what it means. You know that you COULD have just said, "I will give you that point." But you didn't, you had to get all vocabulary on them.

Another instance where vocabulary can make you look like a jerk (and the specific incident that sparked this particular column) is when you get overly excited by your own personal use of your vocabulary. If you usually say repetitive and decided this time to say redundant and then feel the need to cheer yourself on in front of the PRESIDENT of your company for using the word redundant, in fact, you end up making yourself look a) like a jerk and b) a lot dumber than you really are. For those of you out there like me, here's a tip: Using your extensive vocabulary only makes you look good if you don't feel the need to vocally pat yourself on the back afterwards.

And just in case you were wondering, he disagreed with my opinion that two of the bullet points on his outline were redundant.

1 comment:

  1. oh my god! i totally totally agree! and ironacally, if you are vocabularily inclined (?), the best way to improve your vocabulary is by using the big words again and again while speaking. But reaally...It just makes you look like a jerk. I actually feel guilty when I use big words coz I know that people around me might not know the word! Maybe you should get smart, geeky friends so \that you can use your words on them!