Tuesday, February 03, 2009

Linguistic lunacy (a tantrum on Tuesday)

A couple of years ago Roruu published a blog post which I believe is a classic.

But I think it's time for an update. Here are some misuses that set my teeth on edge and make me lose track of what you're actually trying to say in your post:


* It's should HAVE not should OF (you should have picked that up already...)

* What's this new word "Segway"?! I've seen it used several times recently. Today's was a sentence that went "He was the son of a farmer and became a brick layer who segwayed into a large company..." Fine, I thought. He was a lazy git who didn't fancy walking. But this was in 1920 so the Segway most definitely wasn't invented yet. Perhaps you're looking for the word
segue?

* As for peaking your interest? What are you, a mountain?!
Pique, people, please!

* I know envelopes don't usually move but that's not a good enough reason to call them stationary. Just remember E is for envelope and therefore it is stationery!

* And, while I'm out here on my limb waiting for the Flame War, can we talk for a moment about apostrophes? They're not that hard to work out. Either they show ownership (my daughter's carrots) or missing letter or letters (should've). I get confused when I read about "my daughter's and son's". Your daughter's and son's WHAT? (Happy Spider will confirm my crusade against the rogue apostrophe: while in Wangaratta we popped into the pub for a drink. I perused the page headed "Bubble's" and, of course, said to the barman "your bubble's what?". He looked blankly at me and I suspect Happy Spider would have kicked me if I'd not given up the fight and just ordered my drink.)

Do you have any to add to the list(s)?

18 comments :

Anonymous said...

Bought and Brought

The Shopping Sherpa said...

I just remembered another that's started popping up recently:

"Without further adieu"

Does that mean a rename of Shakespeare's play to "Much adieu about nothing"?

;-)

Elizabeth said...

Please don't get me started on some of the atrocious spelling and punctuation gaffs about. Some of the real bugbears for me are - not knowing the difference between 'they're', 'their' and 'there', or when to use the word 'too' as opposed to 'to'. Another frequent faux pas seems to be the difference between your and you're. I know I probably do make some howling gaffs myself but, really, these are just basics of the English language.

Scratch said...

Nice rant, I completely agree!

Your and You're is a personal pet hate.

candyschultz said...

That kind of stuff drives me nuts also. The segway is kind of cute though in light of the rolling vehicle. I suppose that could be what was meant. Probably not.

"On" accident is one which is really making me pull my hair. People on television are saying it and so are my kids. I keep telling them they are talking gibberish but they don't care as their peers know what they are saying.

Anonymous said...

A question, why do American people say 'off of' instead of just 'off'? Has anyone else noticed that?

And, why does my librarian boss insist of saying liberry??? We are not in the berry family.

Leah said...

I have two recent favourites; wedding vowels, and behaving like a pre Madonna.

The Shopping Sherpa said...

I always used to retort, when people called me "A Liberian" that I wasn't from Africa. Which usually resulted in confused looks. *sigh*

Leah: loving your examples, which I haven't come across before.

Helen said...

Hi there or is it their or maybe they're. The trouble is we think it terribly modern and hip to ignore grammar rules and little by little what we hear is what we use. Out of my ears, you ignorant heathens!

Janet McKinney said...

Agree Agree Agree...

There are other examples I have seen too - can't think right now though.

The Shopping Sherpa said...

I have more info on the whole "Segway" thing, courtesy of friends I spent the evening with at Tilleys who say they've heard it used in the past few months on TV (The Chaser, I think they said) and also at a Canberra Chamber Orchestra (I think) concert just this past weekend...

The (linguistic) plot thickens like a good lentil stew!

Anonymous said...

And what about people who put items away in a draw? Drawer, people, drawer.

candyschultz said...

I have no idea why Americans say anything and I am one. Our use of language is atrocious - well not mine. They keep changing the pronunciation of words also and it is hard to keep up. Babel is what we are headed for.

With a Q said...

Another one for the list TSS - one foul swoop - it has nothing to do with flocks of attacking chickens! One fell swoop will do quite nicely thank you.

ninaribena said...

I must give you my most sincere "apologises" as my sparkling "sequences" outshine your "hote cote-cha" , it is really quite "hienous",

Love Nina x

The Shopping Sherpa said...

How about "I'll deal TO it?

Unless it is a live thing and you're playing cards I think you mean deal WITH it...

Natacha said...

Just seen a real estate listing which mentioned "the shrude investor".

When I grow up and become an investor (in items other than shoes, that is), I think I would like to grow up to be a shrewd investor for preference.

sarah.boirin said...

i just found a great one on a parcel box sent to france by airmail. the sender had written "par avignon" - i think that would have confused LaPoste somewhat ! sarah.x