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Thursday, February 11, 2016

Word Peeves

I have a bunch of pet peeves when it comes to the English language.

Alright - No. I've been seeing this a lot lately, even on television, and it drives me crazy. It's ALL RIGHT. Two words. Always two words. It's not like already. Please don't use this.

Alot - While we're on the subject of something that should always be two words it's A  LOT. Would you write ahome, afork, aspoon? No, you would not. Then why do people think a lot is one word? Sometimes they spell check it to allot, which is a completely different word.

Irregardless - Is not a word. The word should always be REGARDLESS.

Mute Point - Just no. It's MOOT POINT. While they sound similar, they are not the same.

Conversate - Really? CONVERSATION is only one more syllable and it's correct.

Some of this is probably a losing battle. Spell check already accepts alright as correct even though it most definitely is not. Same with irregardless. This makes me very sad. Spell Check should try to toe the line on correct usage and spelling, not aide and abet.

I know I have my own language things that probably make other people crazy. I like single "they" when unsure of the person's gender. I've always spelled email and other hyphenated tech words as one without the hyphen. I rejoiced when the AP Stylebook loosened up on this. I can't remember which word they said no longer needed a hyphen, but I loudly cheered over social media.

And the language does evolve because it's a living language. When I listened to some audio lectures on this subject, the presenter quoted people from 100 or 200 years ago trying to preserve the language as it was then and it's amusing because what they were fighting against is now considered standard English. This kind of makes me feel as if having pet peeves is a losing fight. On the other hand, I actually do wince every time I see someone use alright or irregardless. I'm not sure I can overcome my instinctive reaction.