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BS: Language Pet Peeves

Doug Chadwick 27 Jul 20 - 04:20 AM
BobL 27 Jul 20 - 02:31 AM
leeneia 26 Jul 20 - 07:36 PM
Bill D 26 Jul 20 - 11:18 AM
Mrrzy 26 Jul 20 - 10:27 AM
Steve Shaw 26 Jul 20 - 09:06 AM
Jon Freeman 26 Jul 20 - 08:18 AM
Steve Shaw 26 Jul 20 - 08:08 AM
Nigel Parsons 26 Jul 20 - 07:44 AM
Steve Shaw 26 Jul 20 - 04:43 AM
Mrrzy 25 Jul 20 - 11:29 PM
Steve Shaw 25 Jul 20 - 01:14 PM
Mrrzy 25 Jul 20 - 12:24 PM
Lighter 25 Jul 20 - 07:12 AM
Nigel Parsons 25 Jul 20 - 06:35 AM
Mrrzy 23 Jul 20 - 11:29 AM
Mrrzy 21 Jul 20 - 09:49 AM
Nigel Parsons 20 Jul 20 - 05:08 AM
Mrrzy 19 Jul 20 - 06:00 PM
Bill D 16 Jul 20 - 10:06 PM
Mrrzy 16 Jul 20 - 05:14 PM
leeneia 16 Jul 20 - 04:02 PM
Bonzo3legs 15 Jul 20 - 04:16 PM
Reinhard 15 Jul 20 - 03:47 PM
leeneia 15 Jul 20 - 01:04 PM
Mrrzy 15 Jul 20 - 09:49 AM
leeneia 09 Jul 20 - 01:45 PM
Mrrzy 09 Jul 20 - 08:03 AM
Steve Shaw 09 Jul 20 - 07:07 AM
Nigel Parsons 09 Jul 20 - 06:26 AM
Steve Shaw 09 Jul 20 - 06:08 AM
Steve Shaw 09 Jul 20 - 04:39 AM
Mrrzy 08 Jul 20 - 09:44 PM
Steve Shaw 08 Jul 20 - 06:29 PM
Donuel 08 Jul 20 - 03:38 PM
Nigel Parsons 08 Jul 20 - 02:17 PM
Charmion 08 Jul 20 - 01:02 PM
Mrrzy 08 Jul 20 - 12:45 PM
leeneia 08 Jul 20 - 12:06 PM
Mrrzy 08 Jul 20 - 10:38 AM
Nigel Parsons 08 Jul 20 - 10:04 AM
Mrrzy 07 Jul 20 - 08:21 PM
Mrrzy 07 Jul 20 - 03:53 PM
Thompson 06 Jul 20 - 05:21 AM
leeneia 05 Jul 20 - 07:43 PM
Joe_F 05 Jul 20 - 06:27 PM
Mrrzy 05 Jul 20 - 08:17 AM
BobL 05 Jul 20 - 02:45 AM
leeneia 04 Jul 20 - 06:18 PM
Thompson 04 Jul 20 - 06:03 PM

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Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves
From: Doug Chadwick
Date: 27 Jul 20 - 04:20 AM

Here's another journalist's phrase I dislike. "Left the road"

There could be many reasons why the vehicle left the road: the driver might have been drunk; not paying attention; avoiding a stray animal; too fast round the bend; forced off the road by anther vehicle; a blow-out; a medical emergency.

The reasons ought to come to light during the subsequent investigation. The journalists are simply reporting the known facts and not dealing in speculation. They should be commended for their restraint.

DC


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Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves
From: BobL
Date: 27 Jul 20 - 02:31 AM

Likewise "the vehicle went out of control" rather than "the driver lost control". But in this case, the reporter is simply describing what happened, not the cause.


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Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves
From: leeneia
Date: 26 Jul 20 - 07:36 PM

Here's another journalist's phrase I dislike. "Left the road" Yesterday two people, one driving a Lexus and one on a motorcycle, lost their lives because their vehicles mutinied, apparently. The Lexus left the road, went through a guard rail, down a slope, and rolled over. The motorcycle left the road and slammed into a building, all on its own.

Terrifying, ain't it?


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Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves
From: Bill D
Date: 26 Jul 20 - 11:18 AM

"fast"... when people compliment me by saying, about something I have done, "Gee.. you are fast!".... I usually reply something like, "Oh well, I am usually called 'half-fast'."


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Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves
From: Mrrzy
Date: 26 Jul 20 - 10:27 AM

I like that Jon Freeman had a pet hat...


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Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 26 Jul 20 - 09:06 AM

It has brilliant and unpretentious alternatives. If you say albeit instead of although, or though, and prior to instead of before (which is the perfect substitute every single time), you are trying to make yourself sound cleverer than you really are. If you're already clever enough you shouldn't need to do these daft things.


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Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves
From: Jon Freeman
Date: 26 Jul 20 - 08:18 AM

I don’t like “he ran fast” and would use “quickly” but I guess we can tie ourselves up in knots with all this.

Steve is right that dictionaries aim to reflect current usage and language moves on whether we like it or not. A pet hat of mine used to be my perceived Americanism of the (UK) language but I’m not even going to come up with examples now.

Perhaps the one thing I once had some linguistic ability with was writing in plain simple English. I was once asked to do that in a job (when I was “employable”) when we were going for the then BS5750 and tried to do some shop floor procedure manuals for our department. Simple, easy to follow, unambiguous language was the order of the day and I think that I could manage that then.

Of course the language here is, and should be, mostly conversational and that changes things until you get pedants complaining about correctness. At which point, and if I cared, I’d start worrying about how I express what I write…

Which on this one, sorry Steve, but I’m comfortable with albeit...


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Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 26 Jul 20 - 08:08 AM

Brits as old as me may recall the Milky Bar Kid ads on telly, which had the ditty ending in "...Nestle's Milky Bar!" - pronounced " Nessels." The other day I happened to remark that a certain breakfast cereal was made by "Nessel". I received a severe bollocking from Mrs Steve because I hadn't said "Nest-lay." Sheesh!


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Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves
From: Nigel Parsons
Date: 26 Jul 20 - 07:44 AM

I would prefer "hold tightly", but accept that "hold tight" is in general use, particularly on passenger transport.

Flanders and Swann: "Hold very tight please, ding ding!"


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Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 26 Jul 20 - 04:43 AM

If you object to run fast, surely you should also object to hold tight. Any takers?


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Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves
From: Mrrzy
Date: 25 Jul 20 - 11:29 PM

Ok watching a cooking show and the cook pronounced Millet millÉ, as if she were Hyacinth keeping up appearances.

Reminded me of Dick Cheney and his "cachets" of arms.


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Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 25 Jul 20 - 01:14 PM

One more time, chaps. Dictionaries are not there to decide what is or isn't "acceptable." Their role is to reflect usage. And I can't see much wrong with "fast" as an adverb. In fact, it can be used to rather good effect I feel.


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Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves
From: Mrrzy
Date: 25 Jul 20 - 12:24 PM

I agree with Nigel Parsons on this one.

Dictionaries define Literal as Figurative and have lost all claim to correctness.


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Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves
From: Lighter
Date: 25 Jul 20 - 07:12 AM

Oxford English Dictionary considers "fast," as an adverb meaning "quickly," to be perfectly acceptable, with numerous quotations back to the 13th century.


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Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves
From: Nigel Parsons
Date: 25 Jul 20 - 06:35 AM

Next pet peeve: Using 'fast' as an adverb related to speed.
adjective: "He is a fast runner". Yes
adverb: "He runs fast". No, "He runs quickly."


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Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves
From: Mrrzy
Date: 23 Jul 20 - 11:29 AM

Same source: Portland mayor hit by tear gas deployed by federal troops, said the headline, and my immediate thought was, wait, the feds deployed the mayor?


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Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves
From: Mrrzy
Date: 21 Jul 20 - 09:49 AM

WashPo, who should know better, spelled a word for bellybutton Naval. It bugs me more when coming from such a source.


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Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves
From: Nigel Parsons
Date: 20 Jul 20 - 05:08 AM

This is the untold story of. Hitherto-untold, ok, but if you're telling it, not untold now, eh I'd prefer 'previously' to 'hitherto'. Other than that, if the story is being told for the first time them I'm fine with "This is the untold story".


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Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves
From: Mrrzy
Date: 19 Jul 20 - 06:00 PM

Yeah, for about 10 pages in Einstein's biography, I understood relativity.

Peeve: starting a story with This is the untold story of. Hitherto-untold, ok, but if you're telling it, not untold now, eh?


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Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves
From: Bill D
Date: 16 Jul 20 - 10:06 PM

albeit... discussed in USENET https://groups.google.com/forum/#!topic/alt.usage.english/jwJrs1rNN0g

My favorite philosophy prof. in college A.C "Tony" Genova, wrote a paper titled "What is existentialism>"

I still have a copy somewhere..which does not mean *I* can still explain it, but at one time I was clear on it.


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Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves
From: Mrrzy
Date: 16 Jul 20 - 05:14 PM

It is not pronounced just deserts [DEZ-erts], it is pronounced just desserts [duh-ZERTS], but yeah, phrase origin is deserve.


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Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves
From: leeneia
Date: 16 Jul 20 - 04:02 PM

Reinhard, I agree.

Bonzo, you are right. I've never been confidant about woke, wake, and awaken.

Here's another peeve of mine: advisedly.

"This is a millenial dilemma, and I use the term advisedly." What is that supposed to mean? The speaker never mentions an advisor who okayed the term.


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Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves
From: Bonzo3legs
Date: 15 Jul 20 - 04:16 PM

And then there is the dreaded "woke" - which is what I did at 3am this morning!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


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Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves
From: Reinhard
Date: 15 Jul 20 - 03:47 PM

Just desserts, as in the thread "Jolly Rogues of Lynn": " Whereas millers and weavers get their just desserts in the song, the tailor is too much of a rogue, so he ends up enjoying it."

No, they don't get sweets, they get their just deserts, i.e. what they deserve.


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Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves
From: leeneia
Date: 15 Jul 20 - 01:04 PM

I agree, Mrrzy. That's baffling.


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Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves
From: Mrrzy
Date: 15 Jul 20 - 09:49 AM

Headline:
The rare fashion brand that’s beloved by the women of Trump world and not afraid to show it

What?


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Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves
From: leeneia
Date: 09 Jul 20 - 01:45 PM

Steve, I did say that using 'reference' as a verb was a pet peeve of mine. A pet peeve is not a clarion call for all mankind to conform to my preferences.

'Reference' used as a verb is an intelligible word, albeit an ungraceful one.


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Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves
From: Mrrzy
Date: 09 Jul 20 - 08:03 AM

How about Nevertheless? Unless you are Kate Hepburn in The African Queen, I mean.


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Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 09 Jul 20 - 07:07 AM

Nah. I'm a fighter to the death against two things, Nigel: degradation of da lingo and pretentiousness in the use of words. I won't rest until albeit bites the dust. It's an abomination...


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Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves
From: Nigel Parsons
Date: 09 Jul 20 - 06:26 AM

You may not like "reference" as a verb, but you're fighting a lost cause. You are fighting what is now standard English.
Can you accept the same argument about 'albeit'?


900


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Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 09 Jul 20 - 06:08 AM

And there are perfectly good words available which enable the more enlightened among us to avoid such horrors as "albeit," "prior to" and "on a daily basis."


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Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 09 Jul 20 - 04:39 AM

Or two words that seem to be more popular across the water, "normalcy" and "societal."    And I must confess that I've never properly got my head round "existential" so I never use it.


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Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves
From: Mrrzy
Date: 08 Jul 20 - 09:44 PM

Ah, yes, verbing nouns. Love that. But not when there's already a perfectly good word.

What bugs me is inventing words like Authenticness. No, authenticity.

Or Worthiness. It's just worth.


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Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 08 Jul 20 - 06:29 PM

You may not like "reference" as a verb, but you're fighting a lost cause. You are fighting what is now standard English. It's up there with "Will she medal at the Olympics?" "I will access the information by googling it" "She authored the article on global warming." And will you book a holiday next year?

I like these things. They represent evolution in our language and there is no degradation going on. What a contrast with horrid things such as "alternate" instead of "alternative" and "disinterested" used ignorantly instead of "uninterested." Now they really do represent degradation.


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Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves
From: Donuel
Date: 08 Jul 20 - 03:38 PM

Some mixed metaphors are better than others but I have heard some that are incomprehensable. "You can't unring the bell of the crazy uncle locked in the cellar"
"The White House is an infected Cruise Ship without a propeller"


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Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves
From: Nigel Parsons
Date: 08 Jul 20 - 02:17 PM

"He referenced the book of Ecclestiastes."
Unless of course it is used to mean that he catalogued the book, and created an index. Then it wouldn't seem too wrong.


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Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves
From: Charmion
Date: 08 Jul 20 - 01:02 PM

"Reference" is a noun.

"Refer" is a verb. So is "cite".

Nuff said.


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Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves
From: Mrrzy
Date: 08 Jul 20 - 12:45 PM

Just heard a Brit use the adjective Swish, which apparently does not mean what Americans use that word for...

Separated by a common language, again.

I had a British boss for a while, we once had a long talk about that. It was the qualifier Quite that got her into trouble.


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Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves
From: leeneia
Date: 08 Jul 20 - 12:06 PM

Mrzzy, I agree with you about black.

I just noticed another pet peeve I have: using reference as a verb. Take these three sentences:

He referenced the book of Ecclestiastes.
He referred to the book of Ecclestiastes.
He cited the book of Ecclestiastes.

I prefer the second or the third, depending on meaning.


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Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves
From: Mrrzy
Date: 08 Jul 20 - 10:38 AM

Groan, Nigel Parsons.


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Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves
From: Nigel Parsons
Date: 08 Jul 20 - 10:04 AM

Would America work better if it was unpresidented?


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Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves
From: Mrrzy
Date: 07 Jul 20 - 08:21 PM

PBS, talking of the Vikings, called something "unprecedented for its time" and I instantly forgot what the something was.


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Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves
From: Mrrzy
Date: 07 Jul 20 - 03:53 PM

And when did every single use of the word "black" become racist? We are diurnal animals. Night is scary. Nothing to do with skin color.


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Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves
From: Thompson
Date: 06 Jul 20 - 05:21 AM

Centre around. No. You can't centre something around. You can centre something on something else.


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Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves
From: leeneia
Date: 05 Jul 20 - 07:43 PM

Perhaps it should have been, but it is not, and if you use long-lifed, people will assume you can't spell.


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Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves
From: Joe_F
Date: 05 Jul 20 - 06:27 PM

BobL: Compare the plural noun "lives".


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Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves
From: Mrrzy
Date: 05 Jul 20 - 08:17 AM

My take exactly, Bobl.

But I was curious.


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Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves
From: BobL
Date: 05 Jul 20 - 02:45 AM

Shouldn't that be long-lifed?


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Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves
From: leeneia
Date: 04 Jul 20 - 06:18 PM

I prefer the long i. If you have legs, you can be long-legged, and if you have a life, you are long-lived.


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Subject: RE: BS: Language Pet Peeves
From: Thompson
Date: 04 Jul 20 - 06:03 PM

I'd say long-livved, because we're talking about the person's action, though I suppose you could say long-lie-ved in the sense that they'd had a long life. It'd make me shudder, though.


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Mudcat time: 26 September 7:53 PM EDT

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