Wednesday, 25 March 2015

Overstatement, Hyperbole, Catastrophising and More



Sweeping generalisations and hysterical over-reactions.


There’s no tree in this country that’s more than 200 years old.
(Boris Johnson)

Everyone has a fear of immigrants. (Boris Johnson)

Boris Johnson compares critics of the garden bridge to the Taliban. (@AdamBienkov)


OMG. Just received an email sent in Comic Sans. I now need a new computer, a new email address, and bleach. (@ianvisits)

I'm of the opinion that if you use the world "selfie" to describe a picture you should be banned from using a camera. (Mr Wood ‏@woodo79)

The number of BBC presenters who say "haitch-dee" is enough to drive a man to drink and violence.  (@woodo79)

Accents were always the topic that attracted most of the ire, and the words used to express the writer’s attitude were always of the most extreme kind. Correspondents would say they were ‘appalled’, ‘outraged’, ‘horrified’, ‘disgusted’ ... to hear a particular accent or a particular pronunciation. (You Say Potato: A Book About Accents, Ben Crystal and David Crystal)

Sign if you want to make describing a casserole with a pastry lid as a 'pie' a criminal offence. (@elizabday)

Anyone over the age of 12 who uses the word "chaterama", without irony, should be cast out from polite society. (Peter Smith ‏@Redpeter99)

End the Tyranny of 24/7 Email. (NYTimes)

This misplaced apostrophe is a tragedy. (Hamlet is a tragedy. A misplaced apostrophe is a punctuation mistake.)


When the Harry Potter books were at their most popular, there were rather ill-natured complaints that "other authors couldn't get published" because of Rowling's omnipresence, which seems rather unlikely. Meanwhile other people were claiming that she had single-handedly "saved reading" - equally over-reacting. (Moira Redmond)


Women bishops are voted in. A woman asks “Are we saying the Bible doesn’t matter any more?”

Christians/atheists are always shoving their beliefs down our throats. (Translation: They criticised my beliefs/They stated their beliefs.)

Why are you attacking me? Why are atheists allowed to attack Christianity? (Christians on Twitter when asked for evidence)

All atheists are terrorists.
(Saudi Arabia Oct 2014-10-12)

Christmas pudding is idolatrous! (Edmund Gosse’s father belonged to a tiny Puritan sect that didn’t celebrate Christmas. He found his son eating a bit of Xmas pudding and threw the “idolatrous” stuff on the fire. The Plymouth Brethren, and subset the Exclusive Brethren, are still around, running schools where they tear pages out of text books and worse.)

The Welsh Dis-Establishment Bill shocks the conscience of every Christian community in Europe. (FE Smith in 1914)


Homosexuals are destroying human identity.
(Latvian Archbishop Surely a Catholic Archbishop ought to say it is a mortal sin and if you don’t repent you will go to hell and burn for all eternity?)

Gay relationships are not ‘positive’, warn Catholic bishops (Oct 2014-10-13)

Claims that same-sex couples die younger, are more prone to cancer, depression and suicide, as well as being more likely to abuse and injure children have been defended by the Alliance for the Defence of the Family and Marriage (Adfam). (Irish Times Feb 2015)


Without irrationality there would be no film, music, literature, drama, romance or even love. (Letter to Times, 2014-10-11)

Apple smashes through forecasts (FT headline Results exceeded forecasts.)

If young people leave London because of high housing costs it will end up as a theme park for the rich! (The council tenants will stay, and the Turkish, Bengali, Chinese etc communities. They will carry on working as nurses, running shops and driving taxis.)

Life in Britain is now so terrible I’d rather go to Mars and never come back!

Everybody is buying drones as Christmas presents. (Sunday Times Dec 2014)


There is a CHILD in the quiet coach. I cannot contain my horror. (@MasumaRahim)

Children are coming to school unable to use a knife and fork! (Moany reports of head teacher spending hours every day cutting up pizzas because the children can’t. They are four. Give them macaroni cheese and chicken nuggets.)

A levels are the “enemy of scholarship”. (Headmaster in the 50s)


Newspapers contain no news any more! (Translation: There are some opinion columns and I disagree with them.)

The Festival of Britain (1951) - "three-dimensional Socialist propaganda" according to Churchill who demolished it. (via @oniropolis)

According to at least one critic, the 5th Doctor's love of cricket makes ALL of Doctor Who "thunderingly racist". tygerwhocame2t.blogspot.co.uk

In a long rant, film-maker Werner Herzog claims that safety helmets remove our sense of adventure. He doesn't like painkillers or antibiotics either, preferring to adventurously die of septicaemia. All kinds of safety measures that we now take for granted were once “an assault on our precious liberties”. (And libertarians never suggest going back and removing them all.)

More here and links to the rest.

1 comment:

  1. I was enjoying this hugely anyway (reading it makes me feel tolerant and good-natured) and then was delighted to find myself mentioned!

    ReplyDelete