This Writing Life
Writer and psychologist.
View all posts by Ian Hocking
As I think we discussed, I am sometimes guilty of your number one listed peeve, so I’m sorry if it upsets you but in future I will continue to get irritated by things like:
People using the word “envision” when they mean “envisage” (I genuinely loathe the pseudo-word “envision”), using “transportation” when they mean “transport”, using the word “burglarized” when they mean “burgled” etc etc etc…
Of course, protective feelings about one’s preferred flavour of English cut both ways. I recall that one of the complaints of Andrew Schlafly, who set up the preposterous Conservapedia in reaction to Wikipedia’s alleged leftist bias, was that Wikipedia allowed British English spellings. This, apparently, is evidence of Godless pinko anti-Americanism.
People what eroneously use ‘literally’ for dramatic effect.
As in, ‘You’ve just missed her, she left literally a second ago’. (How come I missed her, then?)
Or, ‘I was literally creased up with laughter’. (Ouch!)
And my favourite from some well-meaning commentator recently: ‘They literally have one foot in the semis now.’ (!)
Daniel: Yes. I’m not too sure about burglarised — at least to the extent of generating a real rage about it. But I’m sure that’ll come.
Tim: Pah! These new worlders. They need to put some extraneous ‘u’s back in their words. That’ll sort ‘em out.
Tom: Yes, ‘literally’ is problem. ‘Practically’ is another odd one.
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