Last month, when news broke that former President Donald Trump was indicted by a Manhattan grand jury, I had the shocking realization that I, a reasonably educated adult in her 30s, did not know what “indict” meant.

I mean, I knew basically what it meant. And I knew you aren’t supposed to pronounce the “c” — a lesson I once learned the hard way in front of a group of attorney friends. But if asked, I couldn’t define specifically what it meant. Like, I couldn’t explain to you how “indict” differed from “charge with a crime.” Because, as it turns out, THERE IS NO DIFFERENCE.

The attorneys and court system decided to make up their own language for seemingly no reason other than to make the rest of us feel dumb. So now I regularly find myself having to Google terms like “exculpatory evidence,” and “peremptory challenge” just to follow along with my favorite celebrity court cases.

The confusion started all over again when Trump was arraigned, legalese for showing up in court and having charges read to you.

But as much as we love to pile on lawyers, they are not the only profession to have committed this etymological crime. The folks in real estate are also guilty.

I’ve probably Googled the word “escrow” 79 times in my life. And still, every time I’ve participated in a real estate transaction, I’ve had to ask my real estate agent to define the word to understand why I’m writing a check before buying a house. It would be one thing if escrow was simply a noun. But once you’ve handed money to a third party to hold until certain conditions are met, for reasons I still don’t understand, you are described as being “in escrow.” That’s an entire state of existence that I still don’t get.

And the business sector has its own annoying vocabulary. “Shoot over a deck” is not an uncommon phrase to read in an email, and the uninitiated could not be blamed if they thought the sender was requesting an area of wood or vinyl attached to a patio. Or the hull of a ship.

But when a tech bro asks for a deck, what he wants is a PowerPoint presentation. Why don’t they just say that? I’ll never know.

The rest of the email might read, “Once you shoot over the deck, I’ll loop in my colleague, and then we’ll circle back to leverage your 30,000-foot view. We may need to pivot to better optimize our B2B SAAS systems.” Best of luck deciphering.

Journalism is not exempt. I spent my first week on the job frantically asking my seasoned colleagues what words like “slug” and “nut graf” meant. And, if you can believe it, we have our own version of a nonpatio and nonship deck, but we spell it dek and it just means subtitle. I’m pretty sure. Full disclosure — I’m a year into this career and I’m still Googling a new term someone throws around in a meeting at least once a week.

Understanding the criminal charges against Donald Trump
A conversation with James Egan, the Clark Kent of the Paltrow trial

But the insurance industry might be the biggest offenders of creating and employing gatekeeping terminology. And learning their language is often done against one’s will and in extremely stressful circumstances. Many of us don’t know what a deductible is until we have to pay it, for instance. I guess I understand why they call it “deductible” and not “the significant amount of money you have to pay in addition to the significant amount of money you already pay every month” because the latter sounds pretty bad.

I learned what “exclusion” meant after our waterline burst and an agent informed me their brokerage would not be paying for the damage to our flooded basement because the pipe exploded right outside our house and not within the walls. Which was a fun learning opportunity for me.

On the one hand, these micro-languages within our already existing English language can be extremely obnoxious. Especially when we encounter them for the first time when buying a house or communicating with a tech bro or filing an insurance claim.

But there’s also something very satisfying about becoming fluent or at least semifluent in our career-specific language. And every career has a language.

I bet it feels really good to finish law school and know what indict or exculpatory evidence means without having to whip open another Google tab. It must be extremely satisfying to be able to immediately understand a tech bro’s ciphered message. I can tell you it’s nice to be pretty sure you know what a slug is in newspaper jargon.

But I think we’d all be better off without having to understand deductible.