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Parasite words in English: how to refuse them and what to replace


Source: "Learning English" on "Yandex.Zen"

At the end of 2008, Oxford University conducted a study and identified ten main parasitic words in the English language - these are words that are used "as needed and unnecessarily." Channel author "Learning English" on Yandex.Zen talks about the above words.

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1 - At the end of the day

"In the end, in the end." This phrase is used when a person wants to summarize everything said. You can usually hear: At the end of the day it won't matter how much money you made ... In a sense, such an expression helps convey an assessment of something that is ultimately the most important thing not what I said earlier. Instead, you can use the following expressions: in the end, ultimately, eventually, what it boils down to ...

2 - Fairly unique

"Unique enough." This expression does not make sense, since the adverb “fairly” usually defines an adjective that means something ordinary (fairly common, fairly good, fairly recent). The word unique (unique) means that the item stands out from the majority, so it is not entirely accurate to designate it with the word “fairly”. Better to say “rather unique” - rather unique. Besides, the phrase “fairly unique” is used so often that there is no need to talk about uniqueness.

3 - I personally

"I personally". After observing my speech, I came to the conclusion that at least ten times a day “personally, I” speak this way, without realizing that this is a tautology (oil-oil). It's just better to say “I” and not add anything.

4 - At this moment in time

Literally: "at this moment in time." It is clear that "moment" is a temporary concept, therefore in time makes the phrase unnecessarily fancy and, as in the previous case, becomes a tautology. You can simply say: at this moment, at present, presently, currently.

5 - With all due respect

“With all due respect,” I cannot agree with you. This expression is very hackneyed and often used in the wrong context. The phrase itself is not colloquial, but more official, so you should not boast of it at every opportunity.

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6 - Absolutely

This line often occurs in conversation when you agree with your interlocutor. With very frequent use, it tends to "pall", so you should not often agree with the interlocutor (just kidding). But seriously, there are other options: right, sure, yes, no doubt, I know, etc.

7 - It's a nightmare

This phrase characterizes the constant alarmists: "nightmare"! You can relax and not over-dramatize events.

8 - "Shouldn't of"

This phrase, in theory, should be written like this: shouldn't have, but in speech the consonant sound “h”, which follows another consonant, “slips out” and is not pronounced, “of”, in turn, sounds like the ending of the verb “have” ... I will say that the phrase “shouldn't of” does not exist in English, it is its “phonetic record”. In fact, it should look like “shouldn't have”.

9 - 24/7

Round the clock (24 hours 7 days a week). A slight exaggeration, like nightmare, by the way, and the expression is very boring. You can say day and night, all the time, around the clock, etc.

10 - It's not rocket science

“There is nothing complicated about it” is also a common expression, here are the replacement options: it's not too difficult to grasp, it's not too complicated, it's as easy as a pie, it's a piece of cake, etc.

Original column published on the blog. "Learning English" on Yandex.Zen

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