Essay

Seeking injunctive relief from the misuse of “amazing”

IN THE COURT OF PEEVES, CROTCHETS, AND IRKS
CAUSE NO.  _________________________

JIM GREY

Petitioner

v.

ALL ENGLISH-SPEAKING PEOPLE EVERYWHERE

Respondent

 

PETITION FOR INJUNCTION PROHIBITING MISUSE OF THE WORD “AMAZING”

The Petitioner alleges against the Respondent and states as follows:

  1. That the word “amazing” means “causing a sudden, overwhelming sense of surprise, astonishment, or wonder;” that without all three points of this definition, namely sudden, plus overwhelming, plus surprise/astonishment/wonder, the word amazing cannot apply.
  2. That the Respondent has, in recent years, taken to using the word “amazing” in contexts beyond the word’s originally contemplated meanings:
    1. That although the Respondent may say that their children are amazing, that they routinely fart and belch, and fail to do their homework and receive poor grades, and play too many video games, and text their friends during dinner; indeed, their lives are spent engaged primarily in non-amazing activities.
    2. That the Respondent is known to call church worship services amazing when, in fact, the experiences were merely uplifting or deeply moving. An amazing service would involve God being bodily present, healing leprosy and making the lame walk.
    3. That when the Respondent takes in a sporting event and calls the score, the players, the coach, certain plays, the arena, and even the hot dogs amazing, just as he/she did at the previous sporting event, and the one before that, that such events are therefore common and not amazing.
    4. That the meal the Respondent had at the fine restaurant, or that the Respondent’s mother made at the last major holiday, may have been quite delicious, and may have introduced delightful new flavors to the Respondent’s palate, but remained far from the realm of amazing.
    5. That the Respondent’s last vacation to a distant location may have provided many exciting experiences not available at home. But given that the location has its own problems, such as widespread poverty, confiscatory taxation, a shortage of drinkable water, or a wicked tsumani season, it is inaccurate to call the location amazing.
    6. That when the Respondent, in the execution of his/her duties at his/her place of employment, calls the company’s offered products or services amazing, that this is just marketing puffery intended to mask the problems the Respondent knows to exist in the products or services. Moreover, the rare product that may have initially caused true amazement, such as the iPhone, quickly becomes widely adopted, irreparably harming its ability to amaze.
  3. That Respondent’s overuse and misapplication of the word “amazing” has cheapened the word and rendered it nearly meaningless, causing it severe damage. As such, the word needs the Court’s protection.
  4. Therefore, the Petitioner seeks injunctive relief from the Respondent, requiring them to consider whether synonyms of “amazing” such as “astonishing,” “astounding,” “stupefying,” “awe-inspiring,” or “mind-boggling” could accurately be used instead, and if not, to choose an adjective that accurately describes the event, person, object, or situation.

I affirm under the penalties for perjury that the foregoing representations are true.

______________________
Jim Grey

Advertisements
Standard

20 thoughts on “Seeking injunctive relief from the misuse of “amazing”

  1. Dani says:

    How timely! NPR host Diane Rehm’s guest today will be talking about his book “You Are What You Speak: Grammar Grouches, Language Laws, and the Politics of Identity”.

    Like

  2. Jim's Brother says:

    I’ll be following this case with great interest. It could set a useful legal precedent in the class-action suit I hope to bring to bear on the misuse of “Scrumpdillyicious.”

    Like

    • Should this petition ultimately lead to solid case law, when you file your suit be sure to use the official DQ spelling, “Scrumpdillyishus.”

      Like

  3. ryoko861 says:

    Well, it IS amazing when said children step away from non-amazing things and do something amazing because we didn’t think they had it in them to do the amazing thing! And yes, they will cease to amaze us with these amazing things that they do when they finally step away from the non-amazing things.

    Like

Share your comment

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.