This afternoon saw me and Newshound David visiting a chip company's PR offices to talk about chips. All under NDA, so mum's the word for now. Another word was.. well, I've read about it but didn't believe anyone would actually say it.
But chip company PR said it, apparently without irony, when apologising for the temporary absence of chip company engineer: "He'll be with us in a moment. He's on a bio-break".
Bio-break. It means what you hope it doesn't. I found it strangely annoying, but didn't have time to work out why - my interlocutor returned from his bio-break and we got down to brass tacks (OK, silicon phase locked loops).
On reflection, I've worked out why it's so offensive. It's both twee and redundant: by themselves mere issues of taste, but combined -- sinfully unpleasant. It's redundant because you never, ever need to go into that level of detail: as we're all over eleven years old, none of us need to explain our desire to absent ourselves from a meeting for a few moments. "Back in a minute" or "He'll be here shortly, he's just taking a break". It doesn't matter what's going on - phone your mum, have a pee, inhale some carcinogens, pray to your favourite god, crack one out, all are fine by me.
And if for some reason there needs to be more information, then by golly just say it. Don't say it in disguise. We are not eleven.
It's OK, I've calmed down now. Let's talk about chips, baby.