Thursday, 31 May 2012
Words and Phrases - an Everyday Story of Pedantic Folk
A friend baffled me the other day by saying she had to have a 'procedure'. Eventually, we worked out that she was going to have what used to be called an operation - or 'op', as in, 'The quack reckons I need an op on my bunions, but I reckon I can struggle on for a year or two more.'
Where did this 'procedure' thing come from? When I hear the word used in the medical context, I immediately assume they're going to tattoo the council by-laws on dog fouling across my lower abdomen (and there's a horrid word, 'abdomen', don't know why I'm using it - this medical jargon is clearly infectious).
Although, speaking of infections, I'm never going to pick up the virally spreading usage that is 'medication' - what the hell is wrong with the perfectly good word I've used all my life, namely 'medicine'. 'A spoonful of sugar helps the medication go down' doesn't have quite the same ring to it, in my opinion - ditto 'Laughter is the best medication'. Ugh, ugh, ugh