The discussion of jargon has reminded me of a story told to me by a colleague. As this is at least a third-hand accounting, I will cast this as fiction, but based on a (probably) true story, and given that I have either forgotten or was never told the names of those involved, their anonymity is protected. (I am sure I have forgotten some details and it undoubtedly contains some embellishment.)
This story involves a teaching assistant working in an advanced lab class involving electronics, helping the students with their lab projects as needed. A student was having some trouble with his circuit and after unsuccessful attempts to diagnose the problem, went to the TA for help.
Student – “I’m stuck. Something isn’t working right.”
TA – “OK, let’s have a look” (TA checks a few things and then finally traces it to the power supply and opens it up and pokes around). “Ah, here’s your problem: you have a dead cricket.”
At this point the student undergoes an attitudinal phase change: “Oh for &@%#’s sake I am SO sick of all this @!$*& jargon! What the hell is a dead cricket? Can’t you just speak some plain English for a change? You physics people make this all too confusing! What do you mean it’s a dead cricket?”
At which point the TA show the student the power supply, and points to the dead bug — a cricket — that was connecting the + and — electrodes inside and was shorting out the power supply. “I mean it’s a dead cricket.”