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It’s Official (I beg you to just stop)

August 19, 2009

By Janey  Pancake

Dear Screenwriters of Film and Television,

I have a grievance.  It’s a small but significant nit that I must pick with you, namely, your overuse of the word, “officially” with dialogue between characters.  As in, “I am officially pissed off” or “I am officially in love” ;  “My ass has officially outgrown my pants” and even, “Now I am officially scared”.   Joining its unimaginative brethren in oft repeated lines, “I have a really bad feeling about this” and “Shit is about to get real”, I can scarcely recall a film or tv show that hasn’t used a variant of “(blank) is/was/are officially  (blank)” in the last five years and frankly, I am sick and tired of it.  Not officially or anything, I haven’t gotten around to notarizing my feelings, but think I can be direct without employing one of the lazier dialogue cliché’s of our time.

You may not share my disdain for this, but seriously, now that I mention it I think you will notice it in everything you watch this week.   “Officially” is the nonsense herpes of poor writing.

So please, for my sake and yours, I implore you to find an alternate preface for emphasizing the significance of your character’s emotions.  Please, please, please.


J. Pancake    (J. Pancake found this video that grievously overuses the word officially)


2 Responses to “ It’s Official (I beg you to just stop) ”

  1. renee on August 19, 2009 at 10:59 am

    As someone who *does* get her statements notarized on an regular basis, I offically approve of this post.

  2. Sara on August 19, 2009 at 6:24 pm

    My worst word is ‘interesting’. People seem to think they can use that word to alleviate any sort of reason as to WHY something is ‘interesting’. I am officially uninterested.