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Words to swear by

I'm not the smartest person in the world... but sometimes I like to think I am, especially when it comes to proper word usage. One of my biggest pet peeves when people say the wrong word or make up a word altogether. I personally feel this comes from a bad public education system, as well as an overall lack of respect for the English language. I think that when people use the wrong words, or use them incorrectly it makes them seem “uneducated.” I don’t know why it bothers me if someone isn’t well-read, it certainly doesn’t seem to bother them. Nevertheless it drives me nuts…to the point of wanting to swear.

I have come up with a list of things people say that drive me up the wall. Enjoy

1. “AXE or AXED” instead of ASK or ASKED. This one is very common. I remember the first time I heard someone say this. It was a cousin of mine and they had ASKED my dad if they could AXE him a question. He replied, “No, but you can go stand over there and when you’re ready to ASK me a question, you may.” When someone tries to AXE a question, do they mean to chop it down, or cut in into bits? I don’t know.

2. “BRANG.” The past tense of the verb “to bring” is BROUGHT. I looked up BRANG in the Merriam Webster’s online dictionary and it isn’t there. I once dated a guy who said BRANG all the time. I broke up with him, and explained that the fact that he said BRANG instead of BROUGHT was the reason I was doing so.

3. “EX-PECIALLY” instead of ESPECIALLY. Common among teenage valley girls, I never understood where this one came from because there is clearly no “X” in the word. Interestingly, there is an entire forum online dedicated to do-gooders trying to correct Oprah’s friend Gayle, who frequently says EXPECIALLY. Now, I love Gayle and valley girls alike, but man, this is annoying.  Also common is the term EX-PRESSO.  For those of you who don't drink coffee, don't make this mistake.  It is pronounced espresso.

4. “TOOKEN” instead of TAKEN or TOOK. BF says TOOKEN all the time. I once explained the story of how I broke up with someone for saying BRANG, hoping it would be a subtle “stop-saying-tooken-or-I’m-going-to-drop-an-F*bomb” hint. But he didn’t get it. In two years the only arguments we’ve ever had are over this word. Sometimes I think he’s trying to say, “Token,” to which I respond, “I think you’re a little old, but I guess we can go to Chuck-y Cheese on Saturday.”

5. “150%.” This is just an example. Does anyone remember 3rd grade math? Remember the pie? There is only a whole pie, 100%, there isn’t any more. I know the old Sports adage to give 110% still is common, but mathematically is impossible, and grammatically it makes me want to drop another F*bomb. I understand when someone is really really really sure about something they say something like, “I’m 1000% sure.” But to me, this is so annoying, because being, “100% sure,” would have been sufficient.

I don’t mean to be a snot, but these are peeves. I’m sure everyone has them.

What are some of your pet peeves?

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1 comment:

  1. Anonymous3/31/2010

    The one that drives me CRAZY is EXcape. It's clearly spelled EScape, not Ecscape. Come on people! (husband!!)


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