What are your language pet peeves?
I know that the English language is ever-evolving (though I try in my own way to keep it from evolving into incoherency), but there are some popular phrases that just make my skin crawl. I hereby vow to never use these in any form, written or spoken:
- Across the pond
- Pout — to describe lips in general, not an actual pout
- Wow factor
- Culture vulture
Here are words and phrases that bug me because they’re actually incorrect:
- All intensive purposes (should be “intents and purposes”)
- “Incidences” to mean “incidents” (“incidence” is actually a technical word which is not pluralized)
- “Awe” as an alternate spelling of “aw” (I mean, it’s an entirely different word!).
- “Comprised of”, but I’ve talked about that one before.
- “Should of”, “would of”, etc.
- “Penultimate” to mean “the most ultimate” (it actually means “next to last” — very far from the way it’s commonly used, which is a shame because it’s a great word).
What words or phrases drive you up the wall?
Originally published at skgarner.com on June 28, 2010.