But word associations are fun to poke away at, so I’ll keep going.
It reminds me of the word “alliteration.” When I was an English major, this term (alliteration- the occurrence of the same letter or sound at the beginning of adjacent or closely connected words) seemed to come up pretty regularly. And it is a nice sounding word, and it has relevance in the very specific context of writing, particularly poetry, but there is simply no way to use it casually in a sentence (though I have seen several English majors try): “Hey man, could you slide me some salt. Yo, check out that super smooth use of alliteration there: slide some salt. Awesome!” Yeah, it doesn’t work.
So back to “associated.” Try it:
“This is Mr. X, with whom I am associated” (the “with whom” making it sound even more serious, but try to use the word associated, in reference to a person, without a “with whom”).
“Reading good literature is, for me, associated with happiness.”
“You are judged by the company you have associated with” or rather “you are judged by the company with which you have associated” (can’t end a sentence with a preposition).
Have you ever known anyone that always uses words like “associated”? Doesn’t it always seem like they are trying too hard? And taking themselves way too seriously? They mean well, but something I’ve learned about good writing and speaking, sometimes less is more. For example, regarding the phrases above, why not:
“This is Mr. X from work.”
“Reading makes me happy.”
“You are judged by the company you keep.”
Using more and bigger words does not make you sound or seem more intelligent. Sometimes it has the opposite effect.
Anyone else? Do you know people that overuse the term “associated” or some term like it? I am fascinated by language and would relish some examples. Because I am a big dork and I read the dictionary for fun. I like “big words,” and have to constantly fight the compulsion to use them. Maybe I need a support group, but for now I need a fix.