Ban the balloon

Marla declares:

I am SICK of hearing this word, as in “Mary’s weight suddenly ballooned up to 185 pounds.” You can’t turn on Discovery Health Channel without seeing a show about weight loss surgery, and you can’t see a show about weight loss without hearing the ballooning phrase. I hate it. It sounds like someone stuck a bicycle pump up Mary’s butt and inflated her with pork grease, or some sort of special heavy air. How about a more realistic, less stupidly dramatic phrase, such as “Mary gained 45 pounds,” or the more verbose “Mary’s weight increased from 140 to 185 pounds, a gain of 45 pounds in two years.” Or AT LEAST consult the thesaurus once in a while for a different silly word. How about if Mary swelled, bulged, surged, billowed, expanded, boosted, or aggrandized her way to 185 pounds? How about if she waxed obese? Maybe her pounds mushroomed or pyramided, unfurled or upsurged, escalated, mounted, proliferated, pullulated, swarmed, or snowballed!

Thanks for the opportunity to let off some steam, possibly de-ballooning myself in the process.

2 thoughts on “Ban the balloon

  1. Indeed! Here’s the other thing, most if not all of the terms (including those you suggest) tend to diminish or remove cause and effect. For example one may often read “he starved himself to the point that he weighed only…” etc., but we rarely read “he over indulged until his weight exceeded…”. I might blow up a balloon until it is too big for its own good, but it did not “balloon up”, “swell” or “billow” all by itself.

    I think wherever possible the message of personal responsibility should be reinforced, except where a medical condition, or a bicycle pump was the cause!