You’re going to have to check yourself once you’re on their turf.
You can dispense with the traditional language, you have been one-upped. You had also better get your order straight so as not to look embarrassing in front of a crowd - an iced ristretto, 10 shot, venti, with breve, 5 pump vanilla, 7 pump caramel, Splenda, with non fat soy milk, poured, not shaken. Just remember that buying into the special language makes you more special. The more special the language, the more special you are. So never mind your own words. They don’t count in this particular world. Just remember to make your order long so as to call attention to yourself in the lineup.
When I entered the store I had to scan the diagram so that I would not embarrass myself not knowing what to call the cup sizes. I can only surmise that I am not alone since they prominently display the various names beside a lineup of cups. Otherwise there is no way for the uninitiated to know that short means small, tall means medium, grande means large, and venti means extra large. The staff are tired of having to remind people like myself to use their chosen adjectives. God forbid I should ad lib. Also remember that although coffee with hot milk is a child of the French, café au lait is here called a latté because the markers share proximity with Spanish language speakers. The coffee is expensive. Hence the fancy lingo. When I noted that the coffee I chose had chocolatey nodes of and hints of hazelnut, I had to ask if it was flavoured because I don’t like flavoured coffee. The man behind the counter said no, those words were just sell language like what you would use to describe a fine wine. If you just call it plain old coffee, you can’t justify your prices.
Personal pronouns have also become a big deal these days. Yet despite the recent abolition of gender, couples who are expecting regularly celebrate gender reveal parties. Popular variations on gender pronouns can include iterations of he/her/them/they and such suffixes even get added on to email signatures for companies who are woke and want to display their campy flair. When writing or making public pronouncements, such companies also have to remember that words like woman are now forbidden. Now you have to be inclusive, and say, “people who menstruate”. Governments love to festoon their policy announcements with such decorative phrases.
One of the best marketing campaigns in recent years has been Nabob’s “Respect the Bean” campaign. Locals in Colombia are offered what is effectively a milkshake decorated with whipped cream and sprinkles, and asked for their opinion. They shudder and grimace. No, this is not coffee. This is something else altogether. A traditional experience has been hijacked by clever marketers and we are living in a world which moves on and forgets. But locals remember that a thing is what it IS, not what you add to it.
George Orwell had a lot to say about invented language. It’s particularly spotlighted in his book 1984 so as to be jarring. Words are created in a way which contradicts their meaning. The Ministry of Truth for example, might better be called the Ministry of Lies. The language is called Newspeak and it is the tool by which they create a new reality in this dystopian novel.
Orwell of course, thought language should be plain enough to tell the unadulterated truth. He thought that much of what passes for language, is pretentious. It pretends, and uses the pretend to gain power over you. For example, he rewrites a famous phrase most people know from the book of Ecclesiastes, in modern academic jargon.
“I returned and saw under the sun, that the race is not to the swift, nor the battle to the strong, neither yet bread to the wise, nor yet riches to men of understanding, nor yet favour to men of skill; but time and chance happeneth to them all.”
The same passage, rewritten for academics:
“Objective considerations of contemporary phenomena compels the conclusion that success or failure in competitive activities exhibits no tendency to be commensurate with innate capacity, but that a considerable element of the unpredictable must invariably be taken into account.”
You get the drift. Sometimes words are used to knock you off course, to obfuscate meaning, and to render you incapable of argument because the lexicon sounds so clever and unassailable. Don’t believe it for a moment. And further to that, you can add whipped cream, caramel, Splenda, chocolate sprinkles or whatever you want, but buried beneath that frothy pile of sugar, it’s still just a cup of coffee.