More than 400 years ago, Shakespeare had Polonius in "Hamlet" complain that the word "beautified" is "an ill phrase, a vile phrase." I thought of that critique last weekend in a movie theater when two pre-feature commercial ads by Zions Bank encouraged people to "financialize" their life. What in hell does the vile word "financialize" mean?
Just try to use the word in an intelligent sentence. High-finance bankers have their own language, but telling everyday people to "financialize" while they're waiting to watch "Star Trek"? Come on!
Ever since I and millions of American freshmen had to digest E.B. White's The Elements of Style, I've known to avoid writing "utilize" when "use" would do.