Wednesday, March 15, 2006

The Most WORSTEST Times I've Heard Words Used WRONGLY

I don’t claim to be a grammar whore. I know I mess up lots of stuff, but there are some English language boo-boo’s that make my skin crawl. I started to go in order of most annoying, but I think to avoid being anticlimactic, I’m going to go in order of how funny the screw ups were.

5. This one girl and I did an internship together a ways back, and by the time it was over we both hated one another. Remember that Seinfeld where Jerry’s mom can’t fathom how anyone could not like Jerry? That’s how I felt. I’m not saying that everyone loves me, but I get along with most everyone, and I’ve certainly never had someone detest me to this degree. I think it had something to do with the fact that we were complete opposites, we shared a 10 by 10 office Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, and we had every one of our grad. school classes together Tuesday and Thursday. The word that this gal said that made me want to turn on a hand mixer and swirl around my innards was UNappropriate. Yes, UN.

4. This same girl was talking about the new dog she was getting. Shit, I have to look up the spelling on this . . . I’m so damn lazy. Okay, Weimaraneris the name of the breed. She would say “wisenheimer.” Isn’t that something Moe called Curly on any given episode of the stooges just before he stuck a finger in each of his eyes? Believe me, doing the finger in the eyes bit sounded like a good idea after the 7th or 8th time she screwed up this word. Maybe getting on the ground and running around in a circle, i.e. the Curly Shuffle, would have helped me blow off some steam. I mean, the fact that I already couldn’t stand her, and she was so darn excited about this dog, and she KEPT saying the wrong word, and such a silly word . . .

3. I work with a girl that is just my type physically. She is a petite, little, Italian woman with dark, curly hair. I don’t want to sound like a pig here, but I’d be leaving out a very important piece of information if I did not mention her rear end. She’s super thin and then her rump just jets out to the point where, if she were standing up, one could set his can of beer on her hiney, you know, if you needed to free up a hand for something. Her drawbacks, as far as the possibility of ever dating her are concerned, are that I work with her, and she has a kid (sorry if that sounds insensitive, but I'm not ready for that). However, I think I’d sooner look past those two MAJOR strikes against her before I’d get past the fact that about every other time I talk to her she says “supposaBly” with a “b.”

2. While working at a music store, the best job I’ve ever had incidentally, a customer struck up a conversation with me about the band Queen. He said something to the effect of, “That guy could sing.I mean, he was awesome. I don’t care if he was as gay as a three dollar bill.” It’s QUEER as a 3 dollar bill, you nimrod! Hasn’t he ever stopped and thought how the expression made no sense the way he was saying it? What’s funny is now I say it his way in a thick Chicago accent, and it gets enough laughs for me to continue to do so.

1. Many moons ago my friend’s dad had one of his buddies over, and over the course of a brief conversation, the guy made two of the funniest blunders I’ve ever heard. The first came when he said he was in a subdivision and turned his car around in “one of those coups d'états (he meant cul de sac). Then he was talking about something he had seen on the nature channel in which a tribe in Africa practiced annual sex. My friend’s dad asked, “You mean sex once a year?” To which he replied, “No, man. Sex in the butt. In the butt!” I think you know which word he meant to say.

I have to open this one up to the floor, since so many of you are such talented writers. What’s the crappiest use of the English language you’ve ever heard?

15 comments:

Roxana said...

The "supposably" thing also drives me nuts. I was once going to do an intervention on someone, when I found out IT WAS A LEGITAMATE WORD. Exhibit A. I don't care, though. I will still twitch nervously whenever anyone uses it.

beachgirl said...

Living in the south I am constntly subjected to the common, ending a sentence with a preposition, which I know, at times is unavoidable, but to hear some redneck (and I use that yermw ith all the love in my heart b/c I am related to half of them) yell out, "where's she/he/it AT??" drives me insane!!

But your examples are equally annoying.. the last one, especially the annually?? That owns me!!

Dr. Kenneth Noisewater said...

Rox- A real word, huh? Well, it still sounds goofy. Well, I have a feeling people that use it haven't looked into its legitimacy. Thanks for the research, Rox! Hey, I know my picture formatting sucks, but I know how to do it better for the next one.

Beach- Where did you say you live at? Oops, I ended in a preposition. Thanks for the undercover hick research on the matter!

blake said...

A co-worker's husband always screws up the English language. We call them Terryisms. His funniest to date is while massageing his wife's legs he exclaimed "Susan, you're getting very close veins".

beachgirl said...

Honey- I'm in the freakin country music capitol of the world... But you should know that there is a difference between a hick and a redneck...

I'm all things southern...

Lizzie said...

My old roommate used to say "supposively." It drove me bonkers.

Dr. Kenneth Noisewater said...

blake- very close veins is kind of cute . . .

beach- i didn't know there was a redneck and hick distinction. is hillbilly a step worse than both?

liz- isn't it always worse when the person bugs you to begin with? than each time they say something like "supposively" you want to reach over and sack um'.

Dr. Kenneth Noisewater said...

I just remembered why I thought "very close veins" was cute. It sounds like something one of the kids from The Family Circus would have said. Remember that cartoon from the cartoon section of the newspaper in the 80's?

Heather B. said...

Yesterday, after reading this, I said "supposably" in a serious conversation. Thankfully no one said anything, but it was still embarrassing.

blake said...

Family Circus-you're right! It does sound like that cartoon...

blake said...

Family Circus-you're right! It does sound like that cartoon...

Dr. Kenneth Noisewater said...

Heather- Shame on you! Well, I blame myself for planting the "supposably" seed in your head.

Blake- I'm glad somebody else could back me up on the Family Circus thing.

Ms Smack said...

A senior manager in my department always says 'pacific' instead of 'specific' which has caused many of us to hide smirks, avoid eye contact and smother giggles.

"Oh yes, we all need to focus on pacific strategies to improve our communication with a whole-of-government approach"

Oh god, I cant stand it.

Dr. Kenneth Noisewater said...

Honey- You should say to him, "Pacific strategies? How do those strategies differ from Atlantic strategies?"

I know a guy that teachers in Chicago's inner city, and whenever a kid says ax instead of ask one too many times, he makes them put on a lumberjack outfit that he keeps in the class. Part of me says it's horribly racist, but part of me says that he's helping them beak a nasty habit.

Andrew Edge said...

I have heard many people use heighth, when no such word exists. It's height and width.