Question of the Day

What turn of phrase makes your teeth grind every time you hear it?

For the purposes of this question, we'll take all inherently offensive phrases (e.g. those with racist origins, or containing a gendered slur, etc.) out of contention. And it's not a question about a phrase that people frequently get grammatically wrong (e.g. "should have went" instead of "should have gone"), either.

It's about clichés, idioms, aphorisms, slivers of so-called conventional wisdom, and assorted one-liners of various stripes that just get on your nerves, either for no real reason other than you just bloody hate them or because they communicate an idea or attitude you can't abide.

My answer is: "Life isn't fair."

While it's aggravating when someone uses the phrase in a well-meaning but misguided attempt to be commiserative about something that either needs a better display of empathy or the wisdom of silence (like, say, when you've just lost a good friend suddenly at a young age), it's when those three horrid little words are offered up flippantly in response to a genuine injustice that I go all SET PHASERS TO FUCK OFF.

Extra bonus rage points earned by the even more excruciating "Nobody ever said life was fair."

I am not a violent person, Shakers, but when some privileged wankstain meets a legitimate grievance of the marginalized with a chorus of life ain't fair, I want to punch things.

[Originally posted April 14, 2010.]

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