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Mispronounced and Misspelled Phrases


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Showing 201-225 of 295 posts in this discussion
Posted on Jul 20, 2012 1:02:09 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Jul 23, 2012 5:56:01 PM PDT
I know different pronunciations for words appear (to me) to be geographical. For instance, route - "root" or "rowt"; and I've heard St. Louis as "looye" which I guess would be the French way. Does anyone know how people who live in St. Louis pronounce it?
Oh, and how should one pronounce "memoirs"?

In reply to an earlier post on Jul 20, 2012 1:10:16 PM PDT
[Deleted by the author on Jul 21, 2012 9:56:56 AM PDT]

Posted on Jul 20, 2012 5:14:23 PM PDT
I wonder how many of these mispronunciations are regional. I assume many are because I have never heard the majority of them from locals. I currently live in NH and grew up in MA. However, people around my mother's age from Boston and the suburbs have a genuine "Boston" accent and really drop the "r" in words. When people pronounce these words, I know it's an accent and not a mispronounciation. I do not mean something like "car" versus "cah". I am thinking of when my mother owned the car Saturn, she called it a satin, just like the fabric. It wasn't a mispronunciation, it was just her accent. Interesting distinction. However, she does say "ishe" cream instead of ice cream. This has made me bonkers my entire life. This is not due to her accent. Hope I don't sound like an ungrateful, evil brat :)

Posted on Jul 23, 2012 5:52:15 PM PDT
Maybe we could add "misheard" to the title of this discussion.

Related to me by my Mom-
I always liked being read to as a child, especially at bedtime, and one of my favorite stories was about Peter Pan. There is a part in the story that reads "alligators around the bend" which I apparently heard as "around the bed"...

I had nightmares for years, and now I know why!

In reply to an earlier post on Jul 23, 2012 7:46:09 PM PDT
SleepingUgly says:
"Memwars". Not "memwahs". (the latter is fake French).

I think for route, either pronunciation is acceptable.

Posted on Jul 23, 2012 7:50:26 PM PDT
SleepingUgly says:
Beijing, which should be pronounced "Bay-jing", like the first part of "jingle".

For some reason, people seem to think they need to pronounce it "Bay-zhing" with a soft "g" sound.

In reply to an earlier post on Aug 1, 2012 11:52:33 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Aug 1, 2012 11:54:02 PM PDT
The King Who Rained

I just remembered a delightful children's book called "The King Who Rained" by Fred Gwynn, who was in the TV show "The Munsters" in the Sixties. He also wrote one called "A Chocolate Moose for Dinner" which I haven't seen. The illustrations are hilarious!

In reply to an earlier post on Aug 3, 2012 3:30:16 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Aug 3, 2012 10:58:13 PM PDT
ParrotSlave says:
"I could care less" means that the possibility exists that I might care less. Unfortunately, unlike some languages, such as Lao, intonation and sound level are not part of the formal literal meaning of a word or phrase. In this case, that intonation changes the meaning to the one you prefer. When I say that "I could care less," I say so with the implicit meaning--via intonation--that, yes, the possibility exists that I might care less, but that possibility is zero. In other words, I see nothing wrong with saying, "I could care less" instead of "I couldn't care less."

Posted on Aug 4, 2012 12:27:28 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Aug 4, 2012 12:29:04 PM PDT
eXample says:
I used to say sherbert instead of sherbet because that's how my mom always said it. Wasn't until I was an adult that I realized it was just bet, not bert.

Posted on Aug 4, 2012 12:30:43 PM PDT
John Bonavia says:
Oh, I have a ton of thoughts on this whole area...especially re Americans' lazy mouths that can't pronounce the "t" - "innernational" "twenny," or some consonant pairs "cykulist" "handeling" ...But I'll just quote a few word usage errors that are really irksome and that I see far too often (sorry if they've already been covered):

"Jerry-rigged." No such thing: there is "Jury-rigged" - a temporary contrivance to get by for the time being, a term with a nautical history: and there is "Jerry-built," meaning of shoddy construction, badly made, mostly from the construction industry.

How about "hone in on" something.... Aargh! It's HOME in - the metaphor is about coming in toward a center, not sharpening an edge!

We are starting to see "boogeyman" instead of the original "bogeyman." Actually, the answer is not far to seek: it's due to the mispronunciation that rhymes it with "too" instead of "so." The word isn't even in my Webster or Shorter OED, in either form, but it derives from "bogle" and "bogey" meaning a devil or bad spirit, so the pronunciation is clearly, as I used to hear it, "bo" not "boo."

Posted on Aug 4, 2012 3:56:35 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Aug 5, 2012 3:39:53 AM PDT
ParrotSlave says:
We don't all speak Proto-Indo-European any more, or even Proto-Germanic. I'm sure that the annoyance that is the subject of this forum discussion has manifested itself millennium after millennium, century after century, as our language(s) kept evolving. In some cases, the mispronunciations and misspellings would have become standard, and would have then been championed by new generations of grammarists*, who would have become equally annoyed at having to watch their misbegotten but now standardized mispronunciations and misspellings morph into newer abominations. It's probably due to the presence of Tea Party genes all this time. The Tea Party's notoriously inept grammar could simply be a revolt against grammar regulations, i.e., a logical extension of their belief that individuals should not be regulated by anyone or anything other than themselves. On the other hand, it might very well be due to simple stupidity. I favor the second hypothesis. But if we could just eliminate the Tea Party genes, perhaps we would have a constant language. :)

*What irony there is for me to use the word "grammarist": the word is probably an abomination to grammarists, since it is not yet standard. Oh, horror of horrors....

Posted on Aug 4, 2012 4:31:19 PM PDT
From Alice in Wonderland:

"When I use a word," Humpty Dumpty said, in rather a scornful tone, "it means just what I choose it to mean-neither more nor less."

Posted on Aug 4, 2012 8:33:08 PM PDT
Fred Simmons says:
For starters:
That's a mute point. (should be 'moot')
I could care less.
It's suppose to be. (should be 'supposed')
An historic ... (give me a break--if you just have to try to sound old-fashioned, at least do NOT pronounce the 'h'! This hypercorrection is about as dumb and silly as they come)

In reply to an earlier post on Aug 4, 2012 8:53:02 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Aug 4, 2012 8:54:18 PM PDT
Fred Simmons says:
>SleepingUgly says:
>Beijing, which should be pronounced "Bay-jing", like the first part of "jingle".

>For some reason, people seem to think they need to pronounce it "Bay-zhing" with a soft "g" sound.

Yes, 'zh' seems to be spreading like wildfire. I rarely hear 'j' in garage and Taj Mahal anymore. That's fine; but 'seezh' for 'siege'? Where did that abomination come from?

Posted on Aug 6, 2012 4:48:00 PM PDT
SleepingUgly says:
Saying "flushing out" when the person means "fleshing out". Flushing out refers to getting prey to come out of cover so you can shoot it. Fleshing out means to elaborate on an initial concept (i.e., putting flesh on the skeleton).

Posted on Aug 6, 2012 4:50:16 PM PDT
SleepingUgly says:
And one common mistake is calling something a "travesty" when the speaker means "tragedy". A travesty is something that's ridiculous, not something that's regrettable.

In reply to an earlier post on Aug 6, 2012 5:45:17 PM PDT
Miracles says:
Too funny Pampeliska..............lol.........lol.......lol

In reply to an earlier post on Aug 6, 2012 7:09:58 PM PDT
You had me nodding in agreement until you started bashing the tea party. While I'm not a huge fan, it's a bit of a generalization to say the tea party suffers from stupidity on the whole. And why does politics have to enter into the majority of discussion that aren't even remotely political in the first place?

Posted on Aug 6, 2012 10:43:34 PM PDT
rix says:
He staunched the wound. No no no! You STANCH a wound, then stay staunchly by as your friend is bandaged.
For some weird reason I don't understand that has always bugged me!

But the worst is aksed/axed for asked. You can ask someone something, but if you ax them, you're in big trouble!

In reply to an earlier post on Aug 7, 2012 5:03:21 AM PDT
SleepingUgly says:
Yes-staunched vs. stanch is a common error, kind of like throwing down the gauntlet vs. running the gantlet.

Pronouncing "asked" as "aksed" is not using the wrong word, though, but a difference in pronunciation most often heard in some African American speech and also some southern speech.

In reply to an earlier post on Aug 7, 2012 8:18:40 AM PDT
they talked about that one on the old "THE JOHN LARROQUETTE SHOW" and everyone went around with what they thought it was. one guy said, "i thought it was "for all in tents and porpoises", you know - everybody"

In reply to an earlier post on Aug 7, 2012 8:55:53 AM PDT
"All in tents and porpoises" - I love that, what a great image!! Har!

Posted on Aug 7, 2012 4:36:04 PM PDT
Fred Simmons says:
>But the worst is aksed/axed for asked. You can ask someone something, but if you ax them, you're in big trouble!

this is interesting. Axed is actually very old--it goes back to Old English--well over a 1000 years ago! One form of the verb was axian 'to ask' in modern English. Blacks and Southerners did not invent it.

In reply to an earlier post on Aug 7, 2012 5:46:55 PM PDT
K. Smith says:
So Fred Simmons...
How, If true, did it (ask/ax) travel from Africa to Southern English, I wonder? Can anyone point me a source for studying Black English? been out of school a long time!

Posted on Aug 7, 2012 5:48:37 PM PDT
K. Smith says:
Fred, I should say from Old English to Africa?
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Discussion in:  Health forum
Participants:  67
Total posts:  295
Initial post:  Jul 2, 2012
Latest post:  Jul 17, 2014

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