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1

Silence. I realise it may be among the less common alternatives. I find, however that using it consistently is the only alternative that actually quenches the urge.


1

The question "Is the word 'dumb' offensive?" invites a question in response: "To whom?" To a great many English-speaking people, dumb most certainly is not offensive, making it an entirely suitable word to use in their presence. To a substantial number of other people, it occupies some point on a continuum of inappropriateness ranging from mildly thoughtless ...


1

1.) Has the original usage referring to deaf or mute worn off? Yes. 2.) Am I right in thinking the common usage today refers to something that is not serious or significant? Yes. 3.) Does dumb carry the same PC baggage that stupid or retarded carry even when they aren't used in a hurtful way? No. In my experience, no one uses dumb to mean ...


1

This operates at several levels. Technically "dumb" means "unable/unwilling to speak", and at one time hearing-impaired people were said to be "deaf and dumb" since they (supposedly) couldn't speak. "Dumb" meaning "stupid" thus comes from this belief that deaf people were of low intelligence. Understandably, the hearing-impaired community did not like ...


0

The simplest answer is, Yes, it will be offensive to SOMEbody. Offensiveness is a broad and entirely subjective concept. It is molded by societal standards, personal experiences, and self-esteem levels, to name just a few things. For example, that phrase would not be at all offensive to me, but that's just me. Best you can do, in my experience, is steer ...


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Procrastinator is a term that springs to mind. Useful to describe a person that is too busy concerning themselves with the pros and cons of a solution than actually implementing it


1

A ditherer. This has been suggested in the comments, and is the right word.


0

The term wuss is somewhat broader A weak or ineffectual person (often used as a general term of abuse). Oxford Dictionaries Online But it is often used to describe somewhat who is fearful to commit or take action.


3

Depending on context, you could use "a fence-sitter" fence-sitting - "a state of indecision or neutrality with respect to conflicting positions" or "vacillating" (one who vacillates) vacillate - implies prolonged hesitation from inability to reach a firm decision. He vacillated until events were out of control. or "a shilly–shally ...


2

In the US, if you called the person a "waffler", you'd probably be understood.


2

AS SD2 notes, "to fuck around" means to putter, dither, do random ineffectual things. "The fuck arounds" is a nominalization. If you wake up with them, then you are going to fuck around and thereby abandon anything you planned to do or anything unplanned but useful. This reminds me too of quantum mechanics, in that people using twitter, reddit, and random ...


0

"Fucking" as an adjective or adverb can often be replaced by "very". Eg. "It is fucking hot" means "it is very hot". Therefore you can replace "fucking" with more elaborate adjectives such as "extremely", "amazingly" or "incredibly". "Fuck" can also be used as an arbitrary exclamation, and can be replaced by something colloquial like "wow" or "crikey". Eg. ...


1

My two cents: My mother always said Fudge - everyone likes fudge. :)


2

It's unclear what the exact circumstances are, but when every third word someone utters is "fuck" or "fucking" it's not for "emphasis". In fact the the ability of the word to "emphasize" is lost when used with such frequency. What they're demonstrating is an inability/unwillingness to think clearly about what they intend to say.


1

May I be so bold to suggest that it's not emphasis but restraint that is called for here? Raising children myself I know how easy it is to transfer bad habits without meaning to. Children should be enabled to acquire these bad habits later-on as an adult or at least after puberty sets in. Definition of restraint in English: noun Unemotional, ...


1

My brains are dribbling out my ears is sometimes used when too much information is producing boredom and lack of focus. It's somewhat more general in meaning as it applies to any source of information, not just being spoken to, but it does have the advantage of implying brain damage like your non-English examples. A Google search turns up quite a few ...


1

Carping is a possibility, although it doesn't have the nuance of "brain damage via nagging". From m-w.com: "Marked by or inclined to querulous and often perverse criticism."


2

A harpy according to Dictionary.com is a ravenous, filthy monster having a woman's head and a bird's body. (lowercase) a scolding, nagging, bad-tempered woman; shrew. So for example, you could say, 'I wish my wife would quit harping on me to take the trash out.'


1

To do someone's head in (British informal) Defined under head, phrases (defn. 10) as: make someone feel annoyed, confused or frustrated 'My relationship with my publicist was doing my head in.' Source: ODO


4

I think the closest fit, albeit not as vulgar, is: They chewed my ear off.


1

Here are some ideas: They got on my nerves. (You're right, this is not very strong.) They drove me up the wall, drove me nuts, drove me up the wall, drove me crazy, drove me mad, drove me berserk. He kept at me until I was ready to wring his neck. They made my life a living hell. (My favorite)



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