Thursday, August 25, 2016

"'Ello 'ello 'ello what's all this then ?"

As Virgo's atmosphere seeps in, I'm getting my own, minimal, Virgo on. I have only Neptune in Virgo, but it is in harmonious trine to communication planet Mercury. I'm allowed to don a uniform and play at grammar policing, just once in a while.
“And all dared to brave unknown terrors, to do mighty deeds, to boldly split infinitives that no man had split before - and thus was the Empire forged.”
― Douglas Adams, The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy

First, a matter of policing myself: 'til....till...until. I'd regularly noted "till" being used, even in newspaper headlines, rather than 'til, the version I'd always thought to be the only correct one, being the shortened version of until. I was wrong. It seems that "till" is quite correct, and was actually the older form, 'til having been introduced at a much later date. (See World Wide Words.) In spite of till being the original word, I shall continue using 'til because the word till has two other commonly understood definitions: as noun: a cash register or drawer in which to keep cash; and as a verb to till when cultivating the ground, for crop growing.

Britain, Great Britain, British Isles, England, UK - not really a matter of grammar, this, more of general knowledge. Those terms are not always interchangeable.
The UK – a sovereign state that includes England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.
Great Britain – an island situated off the north west coast of Europe.
British Isles – a collection of over 6,000 islands, of which Great Britain is the largest.
England – a country within the UK.
See HERE for a detailed explanation.

Effect and affect - this is a golden oldie for me, mentioned before in these posts, sighed over it, many times, when reading online.

effect = noun, produced by a cause; a result.

affect = verb, to act on; to produce a change.

Ongoing irritation: could of vs. the correct could have....UGH! Also, another constant irritation: go or went instead of say or said - even more of an UGH!

To/too - I think Americans have abandoned the double 'o' and use 'to' to indicate some kind of excess, rather than 'too'. I find this confusing, when reading!

Good, better, best isn't a problem but bad, worse, worst seems to be. I often see worse written instead of worst, as though the writer wasn't aware of a superlative.

Finally: "very unique" grates on isn't possible. Something is either unique or it's not unique, it can't be more unique than unique. Unique = being the only one of its kind; unlike anything else.


mike said...

Each to their own orthographical and grammatical irritations! I have my collection of peeves, yet I commit my own criminal acts. Today's colloquial usage streamlines language into less definable abbreviations and acronyms, making it all fit to the text message's number of allowed characters, which then spills into common usage. I believe there are individuals in digital-world that elaborate on their cleverness by "creating" these newfound condensations. Too long to read becomes tltr or tl;dr...the Urban Dictionary can be invaluable.

I'm particularly offended by double negatives, but that's an old beef, prior to the internet. Homophones distract me...I correct them in my head...LOL. I'm also sensitive to hanged...people are hanged, not hung.

Maybe my fear is that I'll eventually develop a complete indifference toward misuse upon constant exposure and I'll join the ranks of the illiterate...a form of dementia...LOL. Prior to Netflix and streaming, I read a book every couple of days, which fortified my skills and was an antidote to poor usage exposure, but I've not returned to that behavior, and I need to soon. I have a stack of books waiting.

mike (again) said...

BTW - I keep forgetting to mention the planetary show: Mercury-Venus-Jupiter conjunct in the just-after-sundown western horizon...about 8:30 to 8:45 PM here...gone by 9 PM. Concurrently, Mars-Saturn-Antares are conjunct overhead at the same time, but can be viewed as late as about 10:30 to 11 PM, moving to the western horizon as the night progresses.

Twilight said...

mike ~ Thanks for reporting your own pet peeves. Regarding streamlining - Twitter has a lot to answer for in this regard...gr8t for example - used so as not to squander keystrokes. As long as those condensations don't seep into ordinary text, it'll be not too serious; I wouldn't bet on that not to happen though.

Coincidentally I've just read a piece on someone else's peeve about word usage on the BBC website - this regarding the "verbing" of nouns.

If skies remain clear I shall try to remember to take a look upward this evening. Thanks for the...erm... heads-up.

mike (again) said...

Good essay on verbification...LOL. Similarly, politics presents us with words and phrases that have extraneous meanings. The Republicans have their own peculiarities, such as "war on Christianity" (by "discriminating against Christians"), "Crooked Hillary", or "extreme vetting". Here's an article on the Democratic versions:

Twilight said...

mike (again) ~ Yep - all political-speak boils down to hyperbole and/or spin. Both sides are guilty - maybe, more accurately, I should say: every side is guilty, in view of 3rd, 4th and more parties coming into better focus this year. Not a spit better than used car salesmen, the lot of 'em! ;-)

Bernie Sanders, bless 'im, does tend to call a shovel a shovel though, as is pointed out in your link. Pity that piece is right-wing - they still found fault, even with his plain words!

mike (again) said...

Cuckservative is a new introduction flung by the far right-wingers at some of the moderate Republicans:

I say replace the "C" with an "F" and fling it back at 'em.

Twilight said...

mike (again) ~ Nice ! ;-)

R J Adams said...

I have to admit I sometimes have to scratch my head momentarily over 'effect' and 'affect'. 'Very' plus any superlative drives me nuts. 'If' coupled with 'was', rather than 'were' is another irritant. I don't just blame the internet and social media for this bastardisation of our language. I believe it's the result of a much lower standard of education generally. Having said that I still make the odd blunder, but then it's fifty years since we went to school. Fortunately, I have an excellent editor (Mrs RJ) who rarely misses one of my gaffes and will order its correction forthwith.

Twilight said...

RJ Adams ~ The "lower standard of education generally" is likely to get even lower as members of the fully-fledged Facebook, Twitter, cellphone attached permanently to palm generation become school teachers!

LOL - good for Mrs RJ! I never, ever, encourage anyjazz to edit me. Ye gods! I'd never get a post up in a month of Sundays! ;-/