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BS: Language Pet Peeves

Steve Shaw 16 Dec 20 - 06:57 AM
Mrrzy 16 Dec 20 - 08:54 PM
Donuel 16 Dec 20 - 09:19 PM
Doug Chadwick 17 Dec 20 - 06:13 AM
Doug Chadwick 17 Dec 20 - 06:17 AM
Lighter 17 Dec 20 - 09:09 AM
Mrrzy 17 Dec 20 - 10:23 AM
Jos 17 Dec 20 - 12:16 PM
Doug Chadwick 17 Dec 20 - 12:20 PM
Mrrzy 17 Dec 20 - 01:44 PM
leeneia 19 Dec 20 - 01:23 AM
JennieG 19 Dec 20 - 01:51 AM
Steve Shaw 19 Dec 20 - 04:52 AM
meself 19 Dec 20 - 11:45 AM
Joe_F 19 Dec 20 - 05:49 PM
Mrrzy 21 Dec 20 - 11:25 AM
BobL 22 Dec 20 - 02:34 AM
Jos 22 Dec 20 - 04:11 AM
Steve Shaw 22 Dec 20 - 04:14 AM
Mrrzy 22 Dec 20 - 03:45 PM
Jos 22 Dec 20 - 04:04 PM
mayomick 23 Dec 20 - 02:16 PM
Lighter 23 Dec 20 - 04:21 PM
Mrrzy 23 Dec 20 - 04:45 PM
Steve Shaw 23 Dec 20 - 05:56 PM
Rain Dog 23 Dec 20 - 07:08 PM
Steve Shaw 23 Dec 20 - 08:33 PM
Mrrzy 24 Dec 20 - 03:03 PM
Steve Shaw 24 Dec 20 - 09:16 PM
Rain Dog 24 Dec 20 - 09:21 PM
Stilly River Sage 25 Dec 20 - 01:09 AM
Doug Chadwick 25 Dec 20 - 06:15 AM
Mrrzy 25 Dec 20 - 10:52 AM
Lighter 25 Dec 20 - 11:50 AM
Steve Shaw 25 Dec 20 - 09:03 PM
BobL 26 Dec 20 - 03:46 AM
Steve Shaw 26 Dec 20 - 05:40 AM
Steve Shaw 26 Dec 20 - 06:56 AM
Jos 26 Dec 20 - 09:06 AM
Mrrzy 27 Dec 20 - 09:22 AM
Bill D 27 Dec 20 - 10:13 AM
Doug Chadwick 27 Dec 20 - 10:39 AM
Steve Shaw 27 Dec 20 - 12:16 PM
Jos 27 Dec 20 - 12:48 PM
Mrrzy 27 Dec 20 - 01:11 PM
Mrrzy 27 Dec 20 - 01:16 PM
Jos 27 Dec 20 - 01:39 PM
Lighter 27 Dec 20 - 02:43 PM
Nigel Parsons 27 Dec 20 - 03:13 PM
Jos 27 Dec 20 - 03:18 PM

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Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 16 Dec 20 - 06:57 AM

To be politically incorrect for a sec, one of my favourite headlines of all time, heading a report into Elton John's wedding, said ELTON TAKES DAVID UP THE AISLE.

Sorry about that!


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Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves
From: Mrrzy
Date: 16 Dec 20 - 08:54 PM

Right, so slain in a killing is redundant, and slain in a targeted killling is a lot longer than assassinated. My points exactly.

I was hoping someone would rise to my dangled bait of Explicated!

I love this place.


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Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves
From: Donuel
Date: 16 Dec 20 - 09:19 PM

Gibb, I still don't know how to pronounce the true name of the country Hungary.


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Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves
From: Doug Chadwick
Date: 17 Dec 20 - 06:13 AM

...... slain in a targeted killing is a lot longer than !.

True, but what difference does it make? I read the headline and instantly understood its meaning. I didn't need top stop and think "do they mean assassinated?". If it hadn't been posted here as an example, I suspect my mind would have passed over the word 'slain' and taken it in as part of the complete phrase.

I accept that some phrases, such as "at this moment in time" for "now", can be annoying but the peeve should be with its overuse rather than its word count. When it was first coined it would have sounded fresh, and possibly, even poetic.

Unless there is a world shortage of printing ink, the headline writer should be free to choose how the available space is filled, so long as the meaning remains clear.

DC


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Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves
From: Doug Chadwick
Date: 17 Dec 20 - 06:17 AM

I don"t know where that exclamation mark came from. What I actually copied and tried to paste was:

.... slain in a targeted killing is a lot longer than assassinated.


DC


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Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves
From: Lighter
Date: 17 Dec 20 - 09:09 AM

Doug has the right idea about overuse.

Has anyone mentioned "in real time"?

It can mean "as it's happening," "expeditiously," or "now."


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Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves
From: Mrrzy
Date: 17 Dec 20 - 10:23 AM

Doug Chadwick, you seem to be berating me because they aren't *your* peeves. Please desist.


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Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves
From: Jos
Date: 17 Dec 20 - 12:16 PM

To quote Priti Patel on BBC Radio 4 a few moments ago, regarding a dinner attended by 27 people:
"I don't know the details of where this happened, or the location ..."

Woolly thinking at the very least.


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Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves
From: Doug Chadwick
Date: 17 Dec 20 - 12:20 PM

OK Mrrzy, point taken.


DC


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Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves
From: Mrrzy
Date: 17 Dec 20 - 01:44 PM

Mwah.


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Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves
From: leeneia
Date: 19 Dec 20 - 01:23 AM

In this video

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=S_sYUN5p-ks

we see Michael Flynn, a Trump hanger-on, saying "He [Trump] could put military capabilities in each of those swing states and basically re-run an election in those states."

I'm not going to address the evil of this. I'm going to point out the weasel words "military capabilities." What are these capabilities? They're armed fighters, weapons, drones, spy equipment - equipment to injure, kill and intimidate Americans.

There's a word for that language trick - it's called nominalization.

(Good thing our military hates his guts.)


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Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves
From: JennieG
Date: 19 Dec 20 - 01:51 AM

Several TV presenters here add an extra syllable to words so that 'three' becomes 'the-ree', 'threat' becomes 'the-reat', etc.

It is annoying and irritating. Perhaps it's done for emphasis, but it just sounds sloppy to me. It's mostly done by women, but the occasional bloke has a go too.


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Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 19 Dec 20 - 04:52 AM

"Can't" is replacing "mustn't" this end, as in "you can't underestimate the crucial importance of these measures..." You can if you want!l


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Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves
From: meself
Date: 19 Dec 20 - 11:45 AM

I've grumbled about that one before on here - that error turns the literal meaning completely on its head: "You can't underestimate the crucial importance ... " would mean that there is no bottom to the estimation of the unimportance of the "crucial importance", which is nonsensical as well - whereas "you mustn't ... " emphasizes how "crucial" the "importance" is.

One I've noticed lately that amuses me is the frequent "it's going to be much bigger than we expect", or variations thereof - which could be re-worded as, "we expect it to be much bigger than we expect it to be" ... !


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Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves
From: Joe_F
Date: 19 Dec 20 - 05:49 PM

In my book, "account for" is not a synonym of "take account of" or "tke into account". Properly it means "explain".


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Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves
From: Mrrzy
Date: 21 Dec 20 - 11:25 AM

Yes, usually to someone waiting for that explanation with arms akimbo and a frown.

I wish, fervently, that media like CNN would stop giving a planetary phenom to the Xians. Yes, I refer to tonight's Grand Conjunction.


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Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves
From: BobL
Date: 22 Dec 20 - 02:34 AM

I presume you are referring to a possible similar event being behind the Biblical account of the Star of Bethlehem? More likely the triple conjunction of 8 BC had something to do with it. I further conjecture that the "star" was a cover story made up by the Magi to protect their sources of information from Herod's goons.

Missed the conjunction - cloudy all evening here in the UK (this corner at least).

Apologies for the thread drift - let's get back to being peeved.


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Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves
From: Jos
Date: 22 Dec 20 - 04:11 AM

Cloudy here too, in spite of one of Radio 4's thought spots ('Prayer for the Day' or 'Thought for the Day', I forget which) telling listeners that everyone in the world had a chance to see it.

Last week, not long after it was announced that man-made structures now weigh more than all life on Earth, one of these 'thoughtful people' declared that man-made structures now weigh twice as much as all life on Earth.

Statistical inflation, or just another example of woolly thinking?


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Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 22 Dec 20 - 04:14 AM

"a planetary phenom to the Xians."

Interesting that one of the most linguistically peeved persons here can type a thing like that...


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Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves
From: Mrrzy
Date: 22 Dec 20 - 03:45 PM

I'm a swinger, or something, maybe?


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Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves
From: Jos
Date: 22 Dec 20 - 04:04 PM

A swinger? Do you have a clump of pampas grass growing in your front garden?
Or was that just in the 1970s?


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Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves
From: mayomick
Date: 23 Dec 20 - 02:16 PM

Nano
It used to be ‘back in two shakes of a nanny goats tail’ in Ireland that’s now been replaced by ‘ back in a nano –second’.
I heard ‘only a nano-step away’ two days ago


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Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves
From: Lighter
Date: 23 Dec 20 - 04:21 PM

We had "two shakes of a nanny goat's tale" in NYC as well, decades ago.


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Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves
From: Mrrzy
Date: 23 Dec 20 - 04:45 PM

Tail?

A person who went to work while sick is likely the cause of two separate Covid-19 outbreaks in Oregon.

Um, no. If one person caused them both, they are not separate.


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Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 23 Dec 20 - 05:56 PM

It's always been two shakes of a donkey's doodah where I come from.

You're nitpicking, Mrrzy. You're objecting to things that are unobjectionable to all except you, I reckon.


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Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves
From: Rain Dog
Date: 23 Dec 20 - 07:08 PM

And more than two shakes?


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Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 23 Dec 20 - 08:33 PM

More than two shakes is a w*an*k, mate, and you know it!


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Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves
From: Mrrzy
Date: 24 Dec 20 - 03:03 PM

That is why they are *pet* peeves, Steve Shaw. They need not be anybody else's pet, or even peeve.

But you are the second person to reprimand me for being peeved by things that don't peeve *you* ... I find that odd. *All* of this thread is about nitpicking. If anything peeving anybody in any language were actually objectively reprehensible, nobody would do it and the whole thread would never have happened.

So what, exactly, is your problem with *my* nitpicking, that is not wrong with *your* nitpicking?


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Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 24 Dec 20 - 09:16 PM

Why do you suppose that I have a problem with your nitpicking? Frankly, I care not a jot. When it comes to the use of language, etc., I'm a fairly erudite sort of chap (disagree at your peril...), but, at the same time, I'm pretty indulgent when it comes to what people say or type informally, as I've said a number of times in this thread. You do seem to pick up on things that are fairly unobjectionable, yet you post things yourself that are frequently quite buttock-clenching (see recipes thread for example, what with your yum-yum stuff) and, even in this thread, you are not exactly exempt from that accusation, as I've pointed out. You're exactly the sort of chap that gets my antennae a-waggling. Once you start to criticise others for their lack of linguistic precision, you open yourself up to having your own contributions a bit more closely analysed than perhaps would make you comfortable. Summat to do with pedestals, I think...


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Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves
From: Rain Dog
Date: 24 Dec 20 - 09:21 PM

Merry or happy?


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Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 25 Dec 20 - 01:09 AM

It's difficult to tell who is following whom, but some of you are doing far more bickering through the thread than is seemly, it contributes nothing, and if you don't knock it off you're going to find a BONK next time you try to log on. Capiche?


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Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves
From: Doug Chadwick
Date: 25 Dec 20 - 06:15 AM

Merry or happy?

Christmas and New Year are often linked in a common greeting, in which case, it is'merry' for Christmas and 'happy' for New Year. Taking this as the precedent, I would stick with 'merry' for Christmas even when it is used on its own.

Personally, I prefer 'bah' to go with humbug.

DC


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Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves
From: Mrrzy
Date: 25 Dec 20 - 10:52 AM

I didn't suppose, you said so.

The poem said Happy Christmas but that always sounds British to me. The only time I've heard Merry New Year is in Trading Places. Which is a *great* $mas movie.

Today on PBS one of my fave pet peeve redundancies, village razed to the ground.

Yes, I use fave pet in an ironical sense.

Good Will Hunting reference, there.


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Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves
From: Lighter
Date: 25 Dec 20 - 11:50 AM

OED has "raze to the ground" from 1574, and "razed to the earth" from 1523.

Historically "raze to the ground" is more common than simple "raze."

Emphasis and all, don't you know.


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Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 25 Dec 20 - 09:03 PM

Historical or not, razed to the ground is illiterate nonsense. Claiming ancient usage doesn't cut it. It simply demonstrates that the ancients could be just as illiterate as we are.


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Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves
From: BobL
Date: 26 Dec 20 - 03:46 AM

Razed to the ground as opposed to raised to the heavens?


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Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 26 Dec 20 - 05:40 AM

I'll raze a glass to that.


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Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 26 Dec 20 - 06:56 AM

Talking about redundancies, a nice example that infests a lot of writing and broadcasting these days is "reaching a crescendo" or "building up to a crescendo" when a better word would be "climax." Like a lot of things, this has achieved common currency via ignorance, a bit like "disinterested," "epicentre" and "alternate." They are defended by dint of the fact that they ARE now in common use and have become standard English (in their degraded usages). We have to accept that, but not without a wrestling match...


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Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves
From: Jos
Date: 26 Dec 20 - 09:06 AM

Several times on BBC Radio news summaries yesterday I heard the Brexit described as acceptable 'as an option to' no deal.
I just wanted to shout at them.


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Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves
From: Mrrzy
Date: 27 Dec 20 - 09:22 AM

Ok, question: is the phrase Face Mask redundant? I mean, if you cover your belly, it is not with a mask, is it?

No idea why this just occurred to me.


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Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves
From: Bill D
Date: 27 Dec 20 - 10:13 AM

Well.... some things can be 'masked' without referring to a physical object. In current context, 'face mask' is technically redundant, but it's not a big issue.


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Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves
From: Doug Chadwick
Date: 27 Dec 20 - 10:39 AM

Headbutt / head-butt / head butt


In a street fight, can you butt your opponent with anything other than your head?

DC


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Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 27 Dec 20 - 12:16 PM

I suppose it's a head-butt if you butt someone's head. I just looked up the incident in the 2006 World Cup Final in which Zidane "head-butted" Materazzi (after much earlier needling, Materazzi had pulled Zidane's shirt. Zidane told him that he'd give him his shirt later, to which Materazzi replied that he'd rather have his sister, hence the butt). However, the butt was to Materazzi's chest, in spite of which most reports stated that it had been a head-butt. So you may have a point there, Doug.


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Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves
From: Jos
Date: 27 Dec 20 - 12:48 PM

For Mrrzy: I now have a mental image of you trying to mask your belly button with a face mask.

For the Americans among you: Can you butt something/somebody with your butt?


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Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves
From: Mrrzy
Date: 27 Dec 20 - 01:11 PM

Ok, so is head-butt redundant? Seems so.

As a *verb* mask works for things other than faces (view masked by trees, etc). But as a noun, a mask covers the face, I maintain.

Jos, um, enjoy?


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Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves
From: Mrrzy
Date: 27 Dec 20 - 01:16 PM

Ok rethink: a butt is *with* the head but a head-butt is *to* a head.

Thus head-butt is *not* redundant. Unless misused as in He headbutted him in the stomach.

Gavem drip. I meant gavel drop but kinda like the typoes...


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Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves
From: Jos
Date: 27 Dec 20 - 01:39 PM

Two more examples of garbled English on Radio 4 this morning.
I heard someone describing women as “having a most important place to play in being able to show a different type of leadership”. I really don’t think “place to play” meant an area set aside for them to play chess, or netball.
Then later in the same programme someone talked about “donning on PPE”. Well, Mr whoever-you-are: “donning” MEANS “putting on”.


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Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves
From: Lighter
Date: 27 Dec 20 - 02:43 PM

"Butt me" means "Give me a cigarette (a "butt," even if fresh).

If your smart phone is in your back pocket, you can inadvertently "butt-dial" a phone number.


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Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves
From: Nigel Parsons
Date: 27 Dec 20 - 03:13 PM

Jos:
As you're mentioning PPE. One of my peeves is the expression "PPE Equipment".
This is an example of RAS syndrome (Redundant acronym syndrome (syndrome)). Other examples are "ATM machine" and "TSB Bank".


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Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves
From: Jos
Date: 27 Dec 20 - 03:18 PM

At least, in spite of saying 'donning on', he managed not to say 'PPE equipment'.


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