Modern Manglish: gobbledygook made plain ‘It’s dog eat dog in this rat race.’
‘We’ll burn that bridge when we come to it.’
‘I hope to come first or second, or at least to win it.’
The information superhighway brings more text to our door than ever before. It’s just that most of it gets mangled along the way.
Twenty years ago, Harold Scruby’s Manglish became an instant bestseller. This version expands on the consummate mangles of the original, with all-new Scrubyisms and recent classics from the shame files of the Plain English Foundation.
Modern Manglish explores the traditional linguistic traps of mixed metaphors and mispronunciation, new words and old clichés, and euphemisms, tautologies, and jargon. It also exposes the latest Manglish in serially offending professions such as politics, business, and the law. When exactly did we all become ‘stakeholders seeking to leverage our paradigms to achieve best-practice scenarios moving forward’? Alongside these are the newest contenders for the Manglish crown, ranging from sports talk to silly signs, and from food speak to fancy-pants job titles.
For your delectation — and perhaps chagrin — here are the worst excesses of Manglish, illustrated by Australia’s premier editorial cartoonist, Alan Moir.