Euphemisms are handy words or phrases that can make something wretched sound not so bad. Mark Peters collects euphemisms for Visual Thesaurus, of which these are but a few. (Mark also collects one-hit-wonder words and absurd comparisons, but those are for another day.)
- Disinvest, verb: to make cuts, usually unpopular ones, in a budget.
They’ll make up the money by ‘disinvesting’: firing teachers, putting off maintenance on public buildings, shutting libraries. —Atlantic
- Enhanced pension offer, noun: a retirement buyout.
Eight journalists — along with 19 circulation, accounting and advertising employees — retired from The News on Friday, taking advantage of an enhanced-pension offer by News management. —Buffalo News
- Achieve one’s fiber goals, verb: To use another euphemism: to have a bowel movement.
Fiber One cereals help you to achieve your fiber goals by bringing unique flavors and fiber together for a delicious, satisfying taste experience. –Fiber One cereal box
- Terrestrial dimension, noun: Earth
It is a big day of gladness at the Sober Valley Lodge because now I can take all of the bazillions… and I never have to put on those silly shirts for as long as this warlock exists in the terrestrial dimension. — Charlie Sheen (you knew a Sheen-ism was going to show up here somewhere, right?)
- Give someone the mitten, verb: To sever a relationship.
At the Collegiate Institute of Indiana, a student who is expelled is said to get the mitten. –From the files of The OED
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