This morning I'm eating a very good apple, which I almost didn't buy because its name makes my skin crawl: "Honeycrisp."
The word "crisp" has always bothered me, and combining it with anything -- as in this apple's name, or worse, the Burger King (is it Burger King?) "tendercrisp" -- makes me want to roll around in broken glass.
Why do some words feel like fingernails on a chalkboard, even when we see them? Most food adjectives do that to me, especially when they're applied to things that aren't food. I once dumped a guy for using the word "delicious" to describe a story (okay, that wasn't the only reason; that was symptomatic of much larger issues. But that's the part of it I remember). "Rich" bothers me in any context except to describe wealth. My younger sisters can't stand any word that describes a clothes fastening, especially "snap."
I'll defend the right to free speech with my dying breath, but the reason it's so important is because words themselves have so much power. One of the things I researched for The Express was a list of racial epithets in common use in the late 1950s/early 1960s; it caused me physical pain to put that list together, and it would not surprise me to hear that it hurt the actors who had to say those words.
If words couldn't hurt, we wouldn't need laws to protect our right to use them. The right to carry a weapon is the Second Amendment; the right to hurl invective is the first. I like to fantasize about issuing licenses to bear adverbs.
Anyway, I wish the apple growers had come up for a better name for this excellent apple. What words can you not stand to hear or see?