“Grab”: a word that should know its place
After attending a cocktail reception for the Intelligence Book of the Year Award today and meeting a fascinating array of intelligent people from the world of security, I lunched in the bar of the St. Ermin’s Hotel with my good friend Claire Rubinstein.
A man in a cheap suit joined a party at the next table and immediately announced: “Can we grab a bite?” I cringed. Ms Rubinstein cringed. The entire room cringed. What is it with the British these days? Why do we lower ourselves to the misuse of the English language in such a way?
When you meet someone for lunch, you would suppose you would wish to enjoy their company in a leisurely and civilised fashion. You don’t, surely, wish to just “grab” and go. Like other “grabbers” I have encountered, most especially that pair who so love television sofas, this is a word that truly should know its place.