That’s Crazy Talk! Part 3, The End
I don’t know about you, but I’m getting a bit paranoid when I open my mouth. We all have linguistic tics and we all have pet peeves about other people’s communication habits. This is the last list of the funnier ones I’ve collected; then let’s call it a day. At least until something may or may not cross my path that’s so outrageous that, to be honest with you, I’ll have to share.
“To make a long story short…”: Too late.
Excluding the infinitive verb “to be” making perfectly simply sentence a perfectly wonky sentence: I believe this is a regional dialect aberration, so it behooves the National Guard to go in to those areas of the country–and you know where you are–and do something about this. Examples: “These cookies need baked.” “This riffle needs cleaned.” I kid you not–people say these things. These people need educated about infinitives.
Saying “Whatever.” in response to nearly every question asked.: I don’t mean to stereotype, but… I’ve noticed that teenaged children answer their parents this way a great deal. Whatever could mean that you are truly an easy-going person, willing to go along with just about anything another person suggests. I mostly hear it used in a spirit of disdainful indifference (if that’s possible). “Would you like pizza or mac and cheese for dinner?” Whatever. “You’re grades could be better.” Whatever. “I’m thinking of giving you up for adoption.” Whatever.
Slang or trendy words accepted as part of our proper lexicon.: Language is fluid. We don’t, after all, speak like we are in a Shakespearean play. But take a look at just some of the words that are now a part of word-lovers’ bible–The Oxford English Dictionary: auto-destruct, autodial, bloggable, brain sucker, defriend, emotionalized, gender-bender, green weenie, jet-set (verb/noun), LOL, OMG, social network (verb/noun), and user-unfriendliness. The Oxford word gods may or may not be victims of brain suckerization.
“How are you? used as a greeting.: According to The Cambridge Dictionary (another sanctified source), the custom of asking “How do you fare?” was a way of determining a person health status in the 1600s when a person was likely to drop dead during the conversation if it lasted too long. No response was required. Today, this custom seems unnecessary. Most of us are fairly robust to endure the conversation and in this I’m-too-busy-to-breathe world, no one wants an answer to their greeting-question. Next time someone greets you with “How ya doin’?” or “How are you?” Try answering. “Well, thanks for asking. I’ve been having trouble sleeping lately and I think it’s because I need a new mattress. Either that, or the neighbors are fighting a lot. You know, there’s so much anger in the world today. That worries me…”
I’d better stop, I’m too emotionalized about this.
I you feel you need about more language gaffs, I highly suggest visiting kitchenmudge . This is one awesome (properly used) post and well worth the read!
I hope you had fun poking fun at the stuff that comes out of our mouths (word-wise, that is!). I sure did.