October 7, 2009
10/7: “Whatever…” Takes Top Honors as Most Annoying
If you’re like, “whatever,” and someone gives you a mean look, just remember it is what it is – certain sayings rub people the wrong way, you know? Anyway, at the end of the day, who cares?
If the above paragraph thoroughly irritated you, you’re probably not alone. The question is, which word or phrase bothered you the most?
Chances are it was “whatever.” In a recent Marist poll, nearly half of Americans – 47% – said they find “whatever” most annoying. The other sayings weren’t quite so loathed. 25% say they find “you know” most grating; 11% can’t stand “it is what it is”; 7% would like to ban “anyway” from all verbal exchanges; and 2% reported that they could do without hearing “at the end of the day.”
Interestingly, if you’re traveling to the Midwest, it might be especially wise to leave your store of “whatevers” at home. 55% of residents in that region dislike the term, while only 19% of them disapprove of “you know.” In contrast, 35% of Northeast residents say “whatever” is most annoying, while 32% are most bothered by “you know.”
Table: Most Annoying Conversational Word or Phrase
Mary Azzoli breaks down the results from the Marist Poll’s survey on annoying words and phrases: