At least for me they can be. Especially when my peers or professors say some absolutely ridiculous things. And since I feel as though I have been doing nothing but critiquing lately, I've heard some doozies. For example:
In my printmaking class, a girl was asked to explain her print, at which she said: "I just sorta felt like making an ode to Jersey Shore."
An ode to Jersey Shore. Lyrical verse. To Jersey fucking Shore. Ponder that.
Also, in my figure drawing class, an individual said that the energy of a piece "gives me the sensation that it is breathing". At which point I gave him the "what were you smoking before class?" look. This same kid that is way into woo and astrology and energy stuff, so in a way his comment makes sense, given that he is the one who said it.
My typically rather stern-mannered Faculty Advisor, who rarely curses (even lightly) was telling us to not be afraid of our materials, and to not be afraid of experimenting with textures and paper, going so far as to say "Sometimes, you just really need to fuck up the paper." She then followed this by apologizing her language, which sorta put off the passion of her miniature tirade.
And a word to the wise: be aware of the word "Like". I understand that for many, it is a linguistic filler, much akin to "uh" or "um" or "eh". I know I am guilty of this often. But when your usage of the word "like" begins to interfere with your audience's ability to follow whatever the fuck it is you are trying to say, there's a problem. If I have to hear one more defense with "like" inserted every other between every other word, I might scream. Or throw my pencil shavings on them.
On a related note, overly long and drawn out defenses. I have two reasons for disliking when the defense of a piece takes more than a minute or two at most: 1) Anything that takes longer than two minutes to explain is most likely trying to address too many issues at once; and failing. 2) If you require at least two minutes to defend your piece you are either trying too hard to justify a horrific series of bad visual decisions (make excuses for why it looks like a 3rd grader drew it); or you are so full of yourself that you feel that since your piece is trying to 'Capture all of human existence into a visual plane that is both an affront and a comfort the the audience,' it is so completely beyond the rest of us peons to truly get your masterful work of genius- when the reality is that, no, we get, it just looks like shit.
Finals are next week. I'm hauling ass to finish projects and keep from killing underclassmen that have suddenly discovered that in order to make progress on projects, you need to be in the studios.