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Overused Phrases Toward English Majors

Updated on October 26, 2014


1) "Oh, so you want to be a teacher?"

This is a popular question English majors get asked, and a pain in the behind to any English fanatic. This is mainly due to the fact that people assume being a teacher is the only thing you can do with this type of degree. How else are you going to make any money, right?

The reality is that there are many jobs out there, and English people know it. Technical, Journalist, Copywriter, etc. Getting one is hard, but us majors are hopeful something will come along.


2) "You're going to live in a van down by the river!"

Something my dad has liked to remind me over the years, because English Majors aren't exactly known to make millions (unless you turn out to be the next J.K. Rowling)


3) "What are you doing?"

You're in the moment. You've got your pen and paper, letting ideas flow. Someone is alarmed that you are by yourself and not spending time texting like everyone else, so they ask this and try their hardest to peek at what exactly you are documenting.

This is always an all-around annoyance to me. I try to squeeze in thoughts when I have the time, which is usually during work breaks, and everything gets thrown off. The time I would have had gets nicked off, and I am reminded how interconnected people are in today's world. What happened to pauses of silence? They have been replaced by constant online access.


4) "So you're like a grammar Nazi, huh?"

I feel like many people assume that English people are anal about word structure being top-notch. Although some errors bug me, as a Creative Writing Major I focus more on the ideas and not so much the structure.

In fact, my favorite poet is Jim Morrison, who not only makes up phrases (LAmerica), but challenges the conventions of language.

Excerpt from Wilderness:

"Worship w/ words,w/

sounds, hands, all

joyful playful &

obscene--in the insane



5) "So you love Shakespeare?"

Another stereotype, I feel, is that all English majors are obsessed with Shakespeare. I Iike some Shakespeare plays, but I am nowhere near the girl in 10 Things I Hate About You.


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