I am getting fed up with things….
If I were to say “I am getting fed up” you would know I am getting fed up. If I throw the word fucking in there it suddenly becomes more serious and you can tell it is really annoying me, unless I put it at the end then I am fed up with having sex.
“I am fucking fed up”
“I am fed up fucking”
This sums up how I feel about the language used by our current PM. I am reasonably well read and as a general rule I do not have to look words up all that often. I am not by any means well educated and I would never consider myself intelligent. I have just sent many years reading both fiction and non fiction and I enjoy reading about subjects that interest me. This has lead over the years, as it inevitably will, to my vocabulary expanding. Bill Bryson — Made In America is particularly good if the subject interests you. Not least because of the evolution of language from English to American English but also because it is damn funny at times.
When I hear our PM speak I am unsure at times if he is explaining a problem, resolving a problem or propositioning the person he is talking too. It causes problems when you are trying to deliver a message because people will switch off. I try and keep things simple and to the point. I have read that you should write for your target audience. If you want your work to be accessible to all then you keep the language simple. If the target is a group of scientists you would imagine a lot of language that scientists use. If its medical then you’d expect medical language and so on and so forth. When I write something I am not going to sit here with my thesaurus open just to force the illusion of flexible language skills.
Take today for example. “One metre plus.” What does it serve? Why not just say one metre? By definition if you are saying one metre you are saying that people should stay one metre apart so the plus is redundant. You can't stay “one metre less” in the case of physical isolation, so what purpose does it serve? I am speculating here but as the language from the press conferences has changed. “Following the science” / “Guided by the science” and so on I am going to go out on a limb and say that the science was not overly happy with the ditching of the two metre rule. They are once again setting up the public to take the blame. If we see a second spike or indeed a continuation of the first then they can say “Ah, well you see we did say one metre plus.”
We know that Johnson will pick out words just for the hell of it — see onanism. We know he likes to think it makes him look smart, but you should also ask yourself. When he is supposed to be informing everyone. That is everyone from the thickest of the thick to the smartest of the smart. What use is using language that a lot of people will have to look up? Is it to confuse? Is it to muddy the waters? Or is it just because he likes to think himself smarter than you or I and after that he couldn’t give two shites about any of us.