Because I’m a self-confessed word nerd, the annual announcement of the Oxford English Dictionary’s “Word of the Year” is kind of a big deal to me. Maybe not as big as hearing “McRib is back!” but pretty close.

In case you haven’t heard, the 2023 word of the year is “rizz,” which is short for “charisma” indicating a romantic appeal or charm. As in, “Travis Kelce has rizz and Vivek Ramaswamy has none.”

The venerable OED advises it’s OK to use rizz as a verb, but I would say you should avoid doing that if you’re over 30. No one wants to hear grandma announce plans to “rizz up the new guy at chair yoga.” It just doesn’t sound right.

Not to be outdone, the folks at Merriam-Webster’s dictionary also announced their word of the year: “authentic.” It’s not a bad choice because it was criminally overused in 2023 but it feels a little Great Value/Midge doll compared to OED’s selection. It’s rizz-deficient you might say. Rather like Vivek Ramaswamy.

I was happy to see the annual list of words and phrases that need to go bye-bye from Lake Superior State University (home of the “fightin’ participles”) included my least favorite linguistic trend of 2023: Ending sentences with “Does that make sense?”

Please tell me you’ve noticed the popularity of this wretched phrase, which shows up in even the most mundane context.

“I would like to get the roast beef sub with lettuce and onions, if that makes sense.”

“I’m going to the grocery store after work, if that makes sense.”

I dunno. Does it? Why do you need someone to validate even the smallest daily decision? You wouldn’t expect to hear a surgeon say to the assembled team in the operating room: “I’m going to perform brain surgery on this patient, if that makes sense.” Surely, we’re all here because we agree it does make sense indeed. Especially if that brain surgery is on Vivek Ramaswamy.

“If that makes sense” always comes at the end the sentence but there’s another phrase, equally annoying, which always comes at the beginning: “I wanna say…”

Well, don’t keep us in suspenders; JUST SAY IT! There is no need to “wanna” say anything. We don’t need an announcement to ease us into whatever linguistic lunacy is to follow, if that makes sense. (Ha!)

The Lake Superior State University list also includes past-their-prime words and phrases like “quiet quitting,” “gaslighting” and, banished all the way back in 2008: “It is what it is.”

To those excellent choices, I would like to add a relative newcomer: “Of course.”

Intended as a warm hug of words, too much “of course” is a bad thing. The first few hundred times I heard it as a response, I remember thinking: “At last! A proper replacement for the ubiquitous “No problem” which made old people everywhere lose their damn minds. (“Well!” (huff huff huff) I would certainly hope it’s no problem because it’s YOUR JOB!!”)

“Of course” is overused and has lost any initial appeal due to sheer overexposure. Like Vivek Ramaswamey.

I know what you’re thinking: But, Celia, what about overused comedy punchlines like resorting to the same device to get a laugh paragraph after paragraph?

OK, first of all, how rude. And second, yeah, you’re right. I hereby vow not to ever, EVER write the phrase “said no one ever” again. I loved it; it was funny for a while; and now it must die.

“Said no one ever” will now lie down in the green pastures of overworked prose beside the once clever “not!” as a punchline, the wonderful Chandler Bing sarcasm staple: “Could I BE any more…?” and even the classic when exquisitely executed “That’s what she said.”

What can I tell you, friends? Comedy isn’t pretty. And speaking of who’s not pretty…