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September 2, 2015

The Dreadful Phrases Strike Back
Posted by Abi Sutherland at 01:52 AM * 519 comments

The previous iteration of this thread was getting too long, so here’s a new space to keep adding them.

Comments on The Dreadful Phrases Strike Back:
#1 ::: oldster ::: (view all by) ::: September 02, 2015, 02:30 AM:

The thing is, is that some of the most dreadful are not so much phrases as syntactical constructions.

#2 ::: Bill Stewart ::: (view all by) ::: September 02, 2015, 02:32 AM:

My wife once saw a sign in a store that had both "everyday" and "every day", and both were used correctly. She was surprised and very pleased.

#3 ::: Lee ::: (view all by) ::: September 02, 2015, 03:06 AM:

Thanks, abi! This is one of the amusements that never palls.

#4 ::: nycgeoff ::: (view all by) ::: September 02, 2015, 08:01 AM:

I didn't see this one on the previous list:

He put her on a peddle stool

#5 ::: Dave H ::: (view all by) ::: September 02, 2015, 08:26 AM:

A did see "Don't want someone who will put me on a pedal stool" in a dating profile once. Pretty sure she was in no danger of that from me.

#6 ::: Nancy Lebovitz ::: (view all by) ::: September 02, 2015, 10:03 AM:

I've seen "towing the party line". "Towing the company line" appears in the previous thread, but for some reason, I think "towing the party line" is different and funnier.

#7 ::: Combat Wombat ::: (view all by) ::: September 02, 2015, 10:06 AM:

Are we allowed poor-quality translingual puns?

<Mrs. Wombat, (pointing at two whole fresh eggs in a bowl)>Can you fry me an egg for breakfast?

<Me (pointing at the bowl with two whole fresh eggs)>But that's not un oeuf! You'll be hungry!

#8 ::: Xopher Halftongue ::: (view all by) ::: September 02, 2015, 10:47 AM:

Rando on Twitter: Jesus just waves his hand and your toast.

Me: Why would Jesus want to wave my toast?

#9 ::: James E ::: (view all by) ::: September 02, 2015, 11:58 AM:

Nancy Lebovitz @6: Towing the party line is how you pull the party barge, presumably.

A piece I was editing the other week had a police officer “upholstering his gun”. I guess it makes the handgrip nice and comfy on cold nights?

#10 ::: Steve Wright ::: (view all by) ::: September 02, 2015, 12:02 PM:

I am now reminded of what I think is a David Langford line, about reading the novel title The Tower of the King's Daughter and picturing a burly official hauling with some difficulty on a silken rope.

#11 ::: Christophe ::: (view all by) ::: September 02, 2015, 12:06 PM:

Kitten kaboodle

A friend just discovered this isn't the phrase, and she is broken.

#12 ::: sherwood Smith ::: (view all by) ::: September 02, 2015, 12:36 PM:

I've always loved butt naked, which actually makes more sense than buck naked.

#13 ::: Nancy Lebovitz ::: (view all by) ::: September 02, 2015, 12:42 PM:

#9 ::: James E

Thanks for the link. The Silver Jews do good silly stuff.

#14 ::: Paula Helm Murray ::: (view all by) ::: September 02, 2015, 12:45 PM:

The publishing company I used to work with like to tell their customers they would treat them with "kit gloves". And get pissed when I would be given something to review and correct it.

Then again, I had to explain that 'flushing out' in the way they were talking about it was actually 'fleshing out' something.

Supposedly people who worked with language too.

Whoops, advertising executives. Never mind.

#15 ::: nycgeoff ::: (view all by) ::: September 02, 2015, 01:13 PM:

I'll try not to spam this thread, but I found this one today as well:

people are acting as though this is his first radio

#16 ::: rea ::: (view all by) ::: September 02, 2015, 02:18 PM:

I have actually seen, "toad away," applied to cars.

#17 ::: abi ::: (view all by) ::: September 02, 2015, 02:48 PM:

rea @16:
I have actually seen, "toad away," applied to cars.

I'm afraid I've been reading too much Ursula Vernon. I am now picturing a truly massive toad (yellow-green with lots of bumps) hopping up to a badly-parked car, ensnaring it with a twenty-foot sticky tongue that wraps all the way around it, pulling it into its mouth and hopping off to the impound lot.

#18 ::: Steve Wright ::: (view all by) ::: September 02, 2015, 02:51 PM:

rea @16, I guess that's accurate, if you're in The Wind in the Willows.

#19 ::: Lee ::: (view all by) ::: September 02, 2015, 03:33 PM:

We have a bumper sticker that says, "Do not tailgate the Wizard - violators will be Toad", but that's deliberate.

#20 ::: OtterB ::: (view all by) ::: September 02, 2015, 03:43 PM:

abi @17 I have a comic clipped out of the paper long ago. There is a placid amphibian the size of the car sitting on the back of a little hatchback. One character is saying to another, "Looks like you need one of those rear window defroggers."

That accessory has been a defrogger in our household ever since.

#21 ::: dotless ı ::: (view all by) ::: September 02, 2015, 03:54 PM:

abi@17: I'm afraid I've been reading too much Ursula Vernon.

Can you explain this concept, please?

#22 ::: Mary Aileen ::: (view all by) ::: September 02, 2015, 03:55 PM:

OtterB (20): It may become a 'defrogger' in my household as well. Thanks for that.

#23 ::: Steve C. ::: (view all by) ::: September 02, 2015, 04:21 PM:

I once worked with someone who always said "physical year" for "fiscal year" and it exasperated me no end. He would spell it correctly in emails. He just could never say it.

#24 ::: Lee ::: (view all by) ::: September 02, 2015, 04:32 PM:

Steve C., #23: Reminds me of a former cow-orker who (1) was a sloppy speaker and (2) spelled things the way she pronounced them (e.g. she pronounced the word "skeleton" like the last name of the comedian and spelled it the same way).* This became a problem when she was writing text that would appear in the material we sent out to clients! At least the text for the actual product went by me and I could proofread it, but I shudder to think about the cover letters she sent.


* I should mention here that when I was in elementary school, I thought for years that his name was Red Skeleton. But by the time I was out of high school I knew better!

#26 ::: Lone Sloane ::: (view all by) ::: September 02, 2015, 05:24 PM:

My current bugaboo is a subject being "cut and dry".

#27 ::: Greg M. ::: (view all by) ::: September 02, 2015, 05:47 PM:

I just want to point out that, when this comment thread started, I had not yet finished my first year in grad school at Iowa, had no idea I was moving to L.A., and had four-and-a-half full productions of full-length plays, two web series, and 5+ drafts of a novel to come...and no idea of the mistakes I'd make therein.

Do better, past me! Get smarter! Enjoy the fun! Have more fun!

#28 ::: Fragano Ledgister ::: (view all by) ::: September 02, 2015, 06:14 PM:

I cannot stand 'to no end' being used for 'no end'.

#29 ::: Elliott Mason ::: (view all by) ::: September 02, 2015, 07:10 PM:

dotless ı @21: Ursula Vernon (who sometimes writes as T. Kingfisher) writes amazing screwball magical realism, often comic, and likely to involve wildlife. Also she had a long-running webcomic for a while, and draws amazing things.

#30 ::: Mary Aileen ::: (view all by) ::: September 02, 2015, 07:29 PM:

Elliott Mason (29): I thought dotless ı was making a joke about about the impossibility of there ever being too much Ursula Vernon.

#31 ::: Steve Downey ::: (view all by) ::: September 02, 2015, 07:36 PM:

Stirring the ambers of the fire.

#32 ::: Kevin Reid ::: (view all by) ::: September 02, 2015, 08:49 PM:

James E #9: I can imagine a slightly different universe in which a gun secured in a holster is “holstered up”.

#33 ::: oldster ::: (view all by) ::: September 02, 2015, 09:42 PM:

Kevin @ 32-

Ahh--so that explains the old Mae West line, "is that a separable prefix or are you just glad to see me?"

#34 ::: Xopher Halftongue ::: (view all by) ::: September 02, 2015, 10:09 PM:

Me 8: A friend on FB responded "Because he has a rye sense of humor."

#35 ::: P J Evans ::: (view all by) ::: September 02, 2015, 10:14 PM:

Just seen: 'guilding the lily'

Well, if it needs that kind of help....

#36 ::: James E ::: (view all by) ::: September 02, 2015, 10:16 PM:

Kevin Reid @32: hah! Yes. It's definitely not this universe, though, because having upholstered his gun he proceeded to file several shots with it. Quick on the drawer, clearly.

#37 ::: Jordin ::: (view all by) ::: September 03, 2015, 01:42 AM:

Abi @17: I think Ursula would be at least as likely to show the car being hauled away by a large flock of small birds, i.e., pigeon towed.

#38 ::: Jordin ::: (view all by) ::: September 03, 2015, 01:46 AM:

And in a related vein, my brain has lately been trying to interpret "nematode" as "NEMA toad" -- an amphibian that is in compliance with electrical wiring standards.

#39 ::: Andrew Plotkin ::: (view all by) ::: September 03, 2015, 01:48 AM:

This is not a true dreadful, but *I* dread it:

"But he also wanted to give himself every chance at success. He may have killed 206 people but he gained no benefit of experience from that."

(Quote is from _Zero World_ by Jason M. Hough because that's where I happened to notice it recently and remember the location.)

To my ear, the word "may" there is wrong wrong wrong. It needs to be "might". Clearly this is not the accepted English rule, because lots of people use "may" this way. I can't even articulate what rule I think it's breaking. But I am sure it's wrong. Every time I run into this, it grates.

It has the feel of a tense mismatch. "Might have" implies that the narrator did not know at that point in the story. "May have" implies that the *author* does not know *now*. Really I want to use the past tense of "may", but that doesn't even make sense, of course.

Does anybody else have this problem/

#40 ::: P J Evans ::: (view all by) ::: September 03, 2015, 02:19 AM:

38
I've seen library drop boxes painted as toads. There has to be something for them.

#41 ::: P J Evans ::: (view all by) ::: September 03, 2015, 02:21 AM:

39
You pick up that one also!
Yes, it should be 'might' - it's tense, and sometimes also mood.

#42 ::: Soon Lee ::: (view all by) ::: September 03, 2015, 03:27 AM:

Can't resist linking to Toad Words.

It's apropos.

#43 ::: Quill ::: (view all by) ::: September 03, 2015, 09:46 AM:

OtterB @20

Is that akin to a vindshield viper?

#44 ::: dotless ı ::: (view all by) ::: September 03, 2015, 09:47 AM:

Mary Aileen@30: Yes, thanks, that's what I meant. Elliott Mason@29, sorry I was unclear. I agree entirely with "amazing".

#45 ::: Chris ::: (view all by) ::: September 03, 2015, 10:53 AM:

Incidentally, "toad" is the correct jargon for a small vehicle towed behind an RV.

#46 ::: oldster ::: (view all by) ::: September 03, 2015, 11:05 AM:

AP @39--

I share your instincts about "may" in this sentence. But I think "might" would have other problems, just as severe.

"He might have killed 206 people..." sounds as though it should be completed by, e.g. "if he had pressed the wrong button." It sounds like the consequent of a contrary-to-fact conditional.

"Might" does both of these jobs, as PJE notes. You'd like it to be a pure tense-marker in this context, but it does not stop sounding like a mood-marker. People are going to hear both, and be bothered by the mismatch with one or the other.

I would probably revise to shift the tense-marker to a different verb, e.g. "He thought to himself, "I may have killed 206 people, but I gained...."

With the tense-marking done by "thought", "may" is clearly the right verb, not "might."

#47 ::: rea ::: (view all by) ::: September 03, 2015, 11:48 AM:

I've just come from the comments section of . . . another blog, with a certain overlap in commenters with this one, where a front-pager's characterization of the NFL Commissioner as a "slavering authoritarian" gets denounced in comments: "Comparing a four game suspension of Tom Brady to 'slavery' is . . . asinine." Oh, well . . .

#48 ::: Mary Aileen ::: (view all by) ::: September 03, 2015, 12:02 PM:

Andrew Plotkin (39): I think 'may' is right in that instance, although I can't articulate a rule. Take what I wrote about my very annoying upstairs neighbors last year:

"My neighbors may be annoying, but they have their uses."

That's not saying that they might (or might not) be annoying, it's conceding that they are* and contrasting that with their having other uses. 'Might' would definitely have been the wrong word to express my meaning. As I said, I can't articulate why; call it native speaker intuition.

*or were; they've since moved out

#49 ::: Theophylact ::: (view all by) ::: September 03, 2015, 12:35 PM:

I'm fond of "Oldtimer's" (for "Alzheimer's").

#50 ::: Alex R. ::: (view all by) ::: September 03, 2015, 12:54 PM:

abi @ 17:

What is this "too much Ursula Vernon" you speak of?

#51 ::: Alex R. ::: (view all by) ::: September 03, 2015, 01:00 PM:

P J Evans @ 35

Just seen: 'guilding the lily'

To what guild does the lily belong, and is there an initiation ritual? I once saw the phase "guilting the lily," which does have some amusement value, but I don't think the poster meant it that way.

Jewish friends have also used the phrase "Hanukkah Guilt" rather than "Hanukkah Gelt," but I think that was deliberate.

#52 ::: oldster ::: (view all by) ::: September 03, 2015, 01:22 PM:

Alex @51--

I'm pretty sure that if you rips its stamen out, then you are gelding the lily.

(Which explains the old Mae West line, "is that a pistil in your pocket, or are you just gladioli?")

#53 ::: Theophylact ::: (view all by) ::: September 03, 2015, 02:32 PM:

(Of course, "guilting refined gold" would be a hair less wrong, but just barely.)

#54 ::: Clifton ::: (view all by) ::: September 03, 2015, 03:35 PM:

I think "may" is a special case of a subjunctive modal form in the forms you're considering. These are tricky forms.

Normally one thinks of hypotheticals as counter-factual; however, in these cases what's being proposed is a *factual* hypothetical case and I have a gut sense that in this case "may" is more correct than "might".

Compare the following constructions:
"I may have a good job, but it is still important that I manage my money carefully."
vs.
"I might have a billion dollars, but it would still be important that I manage my money carefully."

Both assert that the second clause is true *even* if the first clauses is true, but the former implies that I do have a good job (without specifically affirming it) while the second implies that I do not have a billion dollars (again, without absolutely disclaiming it.)

#55 ::: lorax ::: (view all by) ::: September 03, 2015, 03:40 PM:

Clifton @54:

For me, the force of the "would be" in the second of your examples strongly suggests that the speaker does not have a billion dollars.

"I might have a good job, but it is still important that I manage my money carefully."

"I may have a good job, but it is still important that I manage my money carefully."

Neither one of those screams "wrong" to me, and they both suggest the speaker does have a good job. It may be that one of these forms is in fact formally incorrect, but it's not "wrong enough" to nag at me.

#56 ::: Andrew Plotkin ::: (view all by) ::: September 03, 2015, 04:14 PM:

I appreciate the continued discussion on may/might! It's one of those things I picked up without being formally taught. Which means, as I noted, that I could have picked up a usage that is uncommon or wrong.

lorax's examples:

"I might have a good job, but it is still important that I manage my money carefully."

"I may have a good job, but it is still important that I manage my money carefully."

...have different implications to me. The second definitely has a good job; it's an idiom questioning causality. The first is a counterfactual, but perhaps the speaker has a good job anyway and is excluding it from the domain of discourse for the sake of argument!

(Yes, that latter is a lot of complexity to lay on one verb!)

But in third-person-past-tense it's all different again:

"He might have a good job, but it was still important that he managed his money carefully."

"He may have a good job, but it was still important that he managed his money carefully."

The last case is the one that bothers me. I agree that the problem is that one degree of freedom (may/might) is trying to do two jobs, so there's probably no solution that will work for every reader.

(Side note: in my original quoted example, the protagonist is an assassin who has his memory wiped after every job. So he *really is* unsure how many people he's killed. But I run into this grammar thing in many other books.)

#57 ::: Mary Aileen ::: (view all by) ::: September 03, 2015, 04:16 PM:

lorax (55): To me "I might have a good job, but..." expresses doubt about whether or not the job is actually good, whereas "I may have a good job, but..." does not. Neither is clearly right or wrong, but they mean subtly different things.

I think Clifton's explanation in #54 is correct.

#58 ::: Mary Aileen ::: (view all by) ::: September 03, 2015, 04:22 PM:

Andrew Plotkin (56): Thank you for clarifying your complaint. I think you are correct that your second example ("He may have a good job, but it was still important that he managed his money carefully.") is wrong. I would change the verb tense: "He may have had* a good job..."

Does that work for you?

*emphasis to show my addition

#59 ::: emgrasso ::: (view all by) ::: September 03, 2015, 04:39 PM:

I think when the dependent clause is past tense, the contrafactual sounds wrong if it isn't also in the past, for both 'may' and 'might'.

So

...may have had ...

...might have had ...

at least for this dependent clause. (Though, oddly, I'm not sure 'might' works with a past tense dependent regardless of its own tense. Possibly a dialectal thing? Or a spoken vs. written thing.)

#60 ::: Mary Aileen ::: (view all by) ::: September 03, 2015, 04:47 PM:

emgrasso (59): You're right that both of those examples should be 'have had'.

'Might' works perfectly well with a past tense, though. "I might have gone to the same college as my brother, but I didn't."

#61 ::: Em ::: (view all by) ::: September 03, 2015, 04:54 PM:

Seen today:

"When a small submarine is trapped in a deep sea cravat..."

#62 ::: David Harmon ::: (view all by) ::: September 03, 2015, 07:41 PM:

rea #47: Oy. I'm reminded of a flap a few years back when somebody got in trouble over "niggardly"... IIRC, they were addressing an audience of college students, too.

#63 ::: Alex R. ::: (view all by) ::: September 03, 2015, 08:58 PM:

oldster @ 52

I'm pretty sure that if you rips its stamen out, then you are gelding the lily.

That's doubtless true, but one should also note that female flowers like a male with lots of stamena.

#64 ::: Singing Wren ::: (view all by) ::: September 03, 2015, 09:01 PM:

On a yard sign promoting a local church:

"Join Us Sunday's at 10:30"

Sunday's what?

#65 ::: Alex R. ::: (view all by) ::: September 03, 2015, 09:18 PM:

...female flowers like a male with lots of stamena.

She hates it when I fire my pistil too soon!

#66 ::: johnofjack ::: (view all by) ::: September 03, 2015, 09:38 PM:

Re: the may/might distinction, I think it's being used in sense 8 of the Oxford English Dictionary's definition "may"):

8. Used in one of a pair of coordinate clauses with concessive force (may be or do..but = ‘although..is’ or ‘does’).

...

1903 D. McLean Stud. Apostles iv. 58 You may force fruit, but you cannot force flavour.
1984 A. Smith Mind iii. xi. 180 The eye may be the visual organ, but it is the brain that sees.

But there's a paragraph in the entry for sense 7 addressing the may/might distinction as well (I'll leave the references to senses 7a, 18b, 26 etc. because that's a lot of ellipses otherwise; if anyone really wants to know what those entries say I can post them):

From the late Middle English period senses 7a and 7b contrasted with the use of might expressing both the past subjective possibility of a situation (sense 18a; originally in indirect statements) and the present subjective possibility of a past situation (sense 18b; this function was taken over by sense 7c). Subsequently there arose a use of might in virtually indistinguishable contexts, but having the possibility of greater tentativeness (sense 26).

#67 ::: dotless ı ::: (view all by) ::: September 03, 2015, 09:54 PM:

P J Evans@35: 'guilding the lily'

There is a notion of a guild in ecology, and lilies could presumably be assigned to one or more, but I don't know enough about them to know what would make sense. (I first encountered that meaning of "guild" only a few months ago after looking up the wonderfully SF-sounding word "forb".)

#68 ::: JJ ::: (view all by) ::: September 03, 2015, 09:58 PM:

I see "rational" frequently used, when what is actually meant is "rationale". Augghhh.

#69 ::: David Harmon ::: (view all by) ::: September 03, 2015, 10:06 PM:

And I just saw "split of the moment idea here..." I'm not even sure what that's supposed to be.

#70 ::: Chris ::: (view all by) ::: September 03, 2015, 10:09 PM:

David Harmon @69: Probably meant to be "spur of the moment".

#71 ::: David Harmon ::: (view all by) ::: September 03, 2015, 10:50 PM:

Chris #70: Oh yeah. Thanks, that "split" just sent my associations off into the weeds.

#72 ::: chris ::: (view all by) ::: September 03, 2015, 10:58 PM:

There is at least one U.S. state that has a "Statement of One in the Same" form for establishing that two names refer to the same person. I wince whenever I have to mention it because, of course, that actually is the name of the form and it's hard to avoid calling it that.

The phrase itself isn't that bad, compared to the rest of this thread and its predecessor, but making it part of the title of an official document seems like a new low.

#73 ::: P J Evans ::: (view all by) ::: September 03, 2015, 11:02 PM:

67
In the full context, it was clear they had gilt lilies.

('Forb' I'd met. guilds of lilies - that would, as a WAG, be Asiatic, oriental, species...?)

#74 ::: Bill Stewart ::: (view all by) ::: September 04, 2015, 12:49 AM:

Somebody I read earlier today was referring to "sewing the seeds" of discord or whatever. Not sure what they were sewing them to.

#75 ::: P J Evans ::: (view all by) ::: September 04, 2015, 01:26 AM:

74
the guilded lilies, maybe. Or the toad lines.

#76 ::: David Goldfarb ::: (view all by) ::: September 04, 2015, 02:41 AM:

Curious that the word "forb" should arise here. It's used several times in Graydon's book A Succession of Bad Days, and it took me by surprise that there should be a short, simple word that in 47 years of ridely pretty widely I had never encountered.

(It may of course be that dotless ı came across the word in the same place I did.)

#77 ::: Nickp ::: (view all by) ::: September 04, 2015, 08:55 AM:

Not a phonetic near miss, but it still says something that the writer did not intend:

"I have worms and Swedish pimples!"

(seen on a sign outside a shop that sells fishing tackle).

Dude, TMI. Just talk to your doctor about it.

#78 ::: Sandy b. ::: (view all by) ::: September 04, 2015, 09:24 AM:

I ran across "He shuttered" in the wild. In a published book.

#79 ::: Steve Wright ::: (view all by) ::: September 04, 2015, 12:10 PM:

David Harmon @69/71 - possibly "split second" sneaking in around the back to turn the phrase into gibberish, there?

I'm just speculating. Off the cuff of my head, sort of thing.

#80 ::: OtterB ::: (view all by) ::: September 04, 2015, 12:15 PM:

Steve Wright @79 Off the cuff of my head (snort).

#81 ::: Theophylact ::: (view all by) ::: September 04, 2015, 12:49 PM:

The French royal flag has gilded lilies.

#82 ::: Mary Aileen ::: (view all by) ::: September 04, 2015, 01:11 PM:

P J Evans (75): toad lines

This morning I started wondering if a witch who turns people who don't tell her the truth into amphibians could be said to toad the lyin'.

#83 ::: Bill Higgins-- Beam Jockey ::: (view all by) ::: September 04, 2015, 01:53 PM:

David Goldfarb, #76:

"Ridely" is a short, simple word that, in 47 years of forbing pretty widely, I have never encountered.

#84 ::: dotless ı ::: (view all by) ::: September 04, 2015, 02:28 PM:

David Goldfarb@76: I came across the word "forb" while researching a small child's question, "What do sheep eat?" The first answer I found was "grass, clover, and forbs", which led to the next question.

Quick browsing suggests that daylilies are classed as forbs; so I suppose that someone has already guilded the daylily.

#85 ::: lorax ::: (view all by) ::: September 04, 2015, 02:44 PM:

I know "forb", though I don't know where I first encountered it; I almost always see it in the phrase "grasses and forbs"; AIUI it's a catchall term for non-woody plants other than grasses. So "clover and forbs" seems a little like saying "apples and fruits"; the implication is that the first is most common or most important, but there really should be an "other" in there.

#86 ::: HelenS ::: (view all by) ::: September 04, 2015, 04:53 PM:

In any case, "gilding the lily" is a misquotation to begin with. From Shakespeare's King John:

SALISBURY:
Therefore, to be possess'd with double pomp,
To guard a title that was rich before,
To gild refined gold, to paint the lily,
To throw a perfume on the violet,
To smooth the ice, or add another hue
Unto the rainbow, or with taper-light
To seek the beauteous eye of heaven to garnish,
Is wasteful and ridiculous excess.

#87 ::: Renee ::: (view all by) ::: September 05, 2015, 01:50 PM:

Seen more than once in a traditionally published book (the first in a series, the second of which is overdue): 'mental anagram'. (Which sounds painful.)

And in a different book, traditionally published by a different company: 'crumbled' instead of 'crumpled'. Paper is crumbled, people crumble to the ground, etc. (This sounds even more painful.)

I was discussing editorial mis-steps with a friend and he told me in all seriousness that bad spelling could be due to anorexia.

Oooo-kay, then.

#88 ::: Ian C. Racey ::: (view all by) ::: September 05, 2015, 03:45 PM:

sherwood Smith @12

I've been told somewhere that butt naked is preferable to buck naked, as one possible etymology for the latter is that it's in reference to the supposed "primitive state" of young Native American males or male African slaves, both of whom were referred to as "bucks".

#89 ::: David Harmon ::: (view all by) ::: September 05, 2015, 04:20 PM:

Renee #87: What's wrong with doing anagrams in your head?

#90 ::: Renee ::: (view all by) ::: September 05, 2015, 05:13 PM:

David Harmon #89: I like doing anagrams in my head (it's a fun game for a long drive -- Licence Plate Bingo!) But having a mental anagram done when an engram was intended ... not so much.

#91 ::: David Harmon ::: (view all by) ::: September 05, 2015, 07:40 PM:

Renee #90: I see... indeed that sounds like it would scramble your memories.

#92 ::: Tehanu ::: (view all by) ::: September 06, 2015, 04:40 AM:

Found this in, I swear to God, the official company style guide where I work:

"Calls to action are provided in standalone fashion beneath body copy followed by a carrot...
Learn More >"

Nice of them to show an example, wasn't it?

#93 ::: Jordin ::: (view all by) ::: September 06, 2015, 05:58 AM:

I thought calls to action were supposed to be *preceded* by a carrot and followed by a stick. Following something with a carrot just encourages it to turn around and bite the hand that feeds it.

#94 ::: Tehanu ::: (view all by) ::: September 06, 2015, 03:25 PM:

Jordin: Well, it called ME to action, but I resisted in the name of, you know, keeping my job. It's good for a laugh, anyhow, and still not quite as bad as their current let's-go-troops slogan, "Journey to Great." (And again -- I'm not making this up; who could?)

#95 ::: HelenS ::: (view all by) ::: September 06, 2015, 05:22 PM:

That's not even a caret; it's a right-hand angle bracket.

#96 ::: oldster ::: (view all by) ::: September 06, 2015, 06:43 PM:

Helen S. @95--Indeed: as a caret, it lacks.

#97 ::: Jeremy Leader ::: (view all by) ::: September 06, 2015, 06:56 PM:

It is too a caret, it's just sleeping. Or perhaps has had to much to drink.

#98 ::: Tom Whitmore ::: (view all by) ::: September 06, 2015, 07:21 PM:

I think it's pining for the fjords.

#99 ::: Xopher Halftongue ::: (view all by) ::: September 06, 2015, 11:01 PM:

It's not pinin', it's passed on! IT IS AN EX-CARET!

>
^^^^^^    ^: Wow, he sure seems heavier dead.

#100 ::: HelenS ::: (view all by) ::: September 07, 2015, 03:19 PM:

Do I caret all about this? No. I'm just posting because I want to get bracket the rest of you.

And you know what Pope Gregory said about carets: they point toward heaven, so non angli sed angeli.

#101 ::: Michael Stockelman ::: (view all by) ::: September 08, 2015, 08:44 PM:

A speaker in a training session:
'Don't just brush it under the elephant that's always in the room.'
What??

#102 ::: abi ::: (view all by) ::: September 09, 2015, 02:13 AM:

By the way, HelenS @100:, *snrk*

#103 ::: Ben Dorman ::: (view all by) ::: September 11, 2015, 09:56 AM:

When a shipyard is done fixing a boat they want to try out the systems, usually the first few days at sea. I see all too often sea trails to describe that period.

#104 ::: Cath ::: (view all by) ::: September 11, 2015, 02:52 PM:

Last month we moved to a different building, and from offices to open plan. Along with a floor map, there is now in circulation a directory of "cubical numbers."

#105 ::: David Harmon ::: (view all by) ::: September 11, 2015, 03:42 PM:

Cath #104: So, the offices run 1, 8, 27, 64...? ;-)

#106 ::: john, who is incognito and definitely not at work ::: (view all by) ::: September 11, 2015, 03:48 PM:

Cath @ 104: Please tell me that they're numbered 1, 8, 27, 64....

#107 ::: HelenS ::: (view all by) ::: September 13, 2015, 09:06 PM:

Someone just answered a two-sentence, eight-word comment of mine on Facebook with "not sure what you mean by that little codex."

They meant coda, I am pretty sure. Or possibly codicil?

#108 ::: Tom Whitmore ::: (view all by) ::: September 13, 2015, 09:10 PM:

That depends: did you hand-write the sentences, and post a picture of them?

#109 ::: HelenS ::: (view all by) ::: September 13, 2015, 09:53 PM:

Tom: no, I did not. Nor did I bind them in a volume.

#110 ::: Em ::: (view all by) ::: September 13, 2015, 10:19 PM:

Someone in a fic I'm reading just got stabbed with a hyperbolic needle, which presumably hurt worse than anything has ever hurt before.

#111 ::: HelenS ::: (view all by) ::: September 14, 2015, 12:18 AM:

Did the bolus make them hyper?

#112 ::: Cath ::: (view all by) ::: September 14, 2015, 10:27 AM:

David Harmon @105, john @106

Great minds! And alas, no.

#113 ::: Cath ::: (view all by) ::: September 14, 2015, 11:40 AM:

Really, the homophone thing makes this too easy. Maybe they stand out more because autocorrect fixes the typos?

The latest, regarding offshoring call centre support: the owners want to "eek out a few more dollars here or there." I would be going "eek!" too, if my job were about to vanish.

#114 ::: Cadbury Moose ::: (view all by) ::: September 14, 2015, 02:59 PM:

Overheard on the bus home:

"...he was very nervous during the interview and kept covering his hands with his mouth."

#115 ::: P J Evans ::: (view all by) ::: September 14, 2015, 03:14 PM:

Seen at Daily Kos, in today's midday roundup:
Hundreds of structures burned in three towns, with no end in site

#117 ::: Mycroft W ::: (view all by) ::: September 15, 2015, 12:36 PM:

Argh: context to #116: #100 HelenS.

#118 ::: Clifton ::: (view all by) ::: September 16, 2015, 01:58 AM:

@ 116: All excep Peason who hav a face like a baboon.

#119 ::: Tom Whitmore ::: (view all by) ::: September 16, 2015, 02:43 PM:

From a spam email about designing a website, and communicating to people:

"Did you know that 70% of website visitors leave a website because they do not find the website useful or relevant? i.e., despite reaching a company’s business presence on internet, they barely convert to customers."

Shouldn't that be "rarely" rather than "barely"? If you don't know the difference, why should I use your communication service?

#120 ::: Fragano Ledgister ::: (view all by) ::: September 17, 2015, 04:02 PM:

I am, this week, plunged back into my regular task of grading student papers (a fact that constantly reminds me that in Iberian Spanish the word for 'duties' -- deberes -- also means 'chores'). A student wrote:

Although humans are all the same, we are very different.

#121 ::: TomB ::: (view all by) ::: September 17, 2015, 11:39 PM:

Recently observed in email: "It's become too big for its breaches"

#122 ::: Jordin ::: (view all by) ::: September 17, 2015, 11:47 PM:

Frangano,

There's a series of TV ads running on MSNBC (for GE, I think) where they show two initially identical animated sketches of some object or scene (a windmill, a row of streetlights, the view out an airplane windshield) and then one sketch changes while the announcer explains that even though these two things look similar, the one on the right uses GE Intelligent Technology (tm, no doubt) so it works better (windmill spins, streetlights blink on and off to conserve energy, view through windshield shows plane flying).

The tag line at the end of the ad is always "Never have two things that are exactly the same been so very different."

#123 ::: Jordin ::: (view all by) ::: September 17, 2015, 11:50 PM:

And in other news, although it's not actually an error, the following unfortunately-phrased headline appeared on a cnn.com article today:

Kicked Syrian migrant offered football role in Madrid

#124 ::: Fragano Ledgister ::: (view all by) ::: September 18, 2015, 08:52 PM:

Jordin #122: Ouch!

#125 ::: johnofjack ::: (view all by) ::: September 19, 2015, 04:42 PM:

(This is a sentence fragment in the original): "Plain, white baseball hat, planted vicariously on his head and tilted to the side."

#126 ::: Xopher Halftongue ::: (view all by) ::: September 19, 2015, 04:57 PM:

Just found rereading an old Electrolite thread: "I would have saved myself a lot of vein gesturing throughout this thread..."

M. Fragonard comes to mind.

#127 ::: Cadbury Moose ::: (view all by) ::: September 20, 2015, 08:55 AM:

During the Singapore Grand Prix:

Engineer to Lewis Hamilton (currently fourth): "Okay, Lewis, we are going to have to look after this tyre set - try to eek it out as long as we can."

Clearly there are mice involved in this.

#128 ::: Fragano Ledgister ::: (view all by) ::: September 20, 2015, 05:01 PM:

As I wrap up marking papers for the weekend, this sentence stuck out:

The violence and rage of the people enticed riots, killed nobles and overall began a revolution in hope of an outcome favoring the majority.

I grant that the problem here is a simple spoonerism, but the image is, shall we say, alluring.

#129 ::: Cassy B. ::: (view all by) ::: September 20, 2015, 05:58 PM:

Fragano Ledgister @128, surely you mean it's enticing....? <grin>

#130 ::: Terry Karney ::: (view all by) ::: September 20, 2015, 06:59 PM:

Cadbury Moose: Was that a real-time subtitling? Because I cut them a lot of slack for simple homophones.

#131 ::: HelenS ::: (view all by) ::: September 20, 2015, 07:00 PM:

It's kind of an incite joke.

#132 ::: Bill Stewart ::: (view all by) ::: September 21, 2015, 12:41 AM:

Terry Karney@130, alas variants on the phrase "eek out" show up often enough in what passes for print on the internet, sometimes including in electronic versions of actual newspapers, that I think it has to be ascribed to ignorance rather than just accident.

(That's not counting the times that pattern matchers find it as a part of "geek out", of course, but eek, it's enough to freek me out.)

#133 ::: Cadbury Moose ::: (view all by) ::: September 21, 2015, 04:01 PM:

Terry @ #130

No, it seemed to be a text running commentary on the race.

Could be a spell chequer error rather than a braino or typo.

#134 ::: P J Evans ::: (view all by) ::: September 23, 2015, 05:23 PM:

Just seen:
ad homonym attacks

#135 ::: Buddha Buck ::: (view all by) ::: September 23, 2015, 09:22 PM:

PJ @134:

I've been known to refer to "argumentum ad nominem", to refer to the use of names (like "Billary", "John McShame", etc) as a way of sounding like you are making an argument without actually, you know, presenting any evidence related to the situation. Perhaps "ad homonym attacks" refers to some related fallacy?

#136 ::: Lee ::: (view all by) ::: September 23, 2015, 10:14 PM:

Buddha Buck, #135: Context would probably provide a few clues. I remember using "the McCampaign" myself in 2008, but that was deliberately invoking the sense of words like "McJob" or "McMansion". I avoided "McPalin" on the grounds that it sounded like a fanfic ship descriptor!

#137 ::: Fragano Ledgister ::: (view all by) ::: September 28, 2015, 12:26 PM:

I was enticed to something, but it was definitely an incite joke.

#138 ::: Carol Kimball ::: (view all by) ::: September 28, 2015, 12:39 PM:

Fragano, although paper-grading is a trying time for you, I confess looking forward to the awful things you post.

#139 ::: David Harmon ::: (view all by) ::: September 28, 2015, 03:46 PM:

P J Evans #134: A nicely self-referential error!

#140 ::: Bill Stewart ::: (view all by) ::: September 29, 2015, 01:16 AM:

My apologies for agreeing with Carol Kimball@138.

And I saw somebody on the web today use the word "back-peddle". It was not a totally inaccurate word to use for the behaviour it was describing, even though it wasn't the one the writer meant.

#141 ::: Tom Whitmore ::: (view all by) ::: September 29, 2015, 07:51 PM:

From a neighborhood watch website, locally:

"We have been telling neighbors to get the U-shaped bike lock an key to better detour theives."

Maybe they should take a different route?

#142 ::: weatherglass ::: (view all by) ::: October 05, 2015, 03:13 AM:

From my most recent batch of student papers, I have discovered that the Punic Wars led the Roman Empire begin its rise to empirical conquest, which makes me badly want a recording of the Empirical March. However, the Romans were a laughing-stalk on the sea.

#143 ::: James Moar ::: (view all by) ::: October 05, 2015, 06:51 AM:

empirical conquest

"Can we conquer them?"
(big fight)
"Yep."

#144 ::: Steve Wright ::: (view all by) ::: October 05, 2015, 09:29 AM:

I am now reminded of a very badly OCR-ed book I tried to read about Hannibal, who was (apparently) a man of great diatinotion at the time of the Pfnic Wab.

#145 ::: Bruce H. ::: (view all by) ::: October 05, 2015, 06:58 PM:

Clearly a Pfnic Wab is one in which the loser gets pwned.

Very badly OCR-ed, indeed.

#146 ::: Erik Nelson ::: (view all by) ::: October 05, 2015, 07:05 PM:

140: Back-peddle.

I have also seen "soft-pedaling"

#147 ::: Xopher Halftongue ::: (view all by) ::: October 05, 2015, 07:27 PM:

Someone on Twitter just described Joe Biden as the one they wanted to see being a "loose canon" on the Sunday talk shows in 2017. Even if he started seminary now, I doubt he could rise that quickly through the ranks, even in the Episcopal Church.

#148 ::: Annie Y ::: (view all by) ::: October 05, 2015, 08:22 PM:

Erik Nelson @ 146

What is wrong with that one - it is even in the dictionary? :)

#149 ::: P J Evans ::: (view all by) ::: October 05, 2015, 08:59 PM:

146
Soft-pedaling is actually okay - think of the pedals on a piano.

#150 ::: joann ::: (view all by) ::: October 08, 2015, 11:22 AM:

"The restaurant was later helmed by [X] before the reigns were passed on to [Y]"

I am seeing a transfer of orb, sceptre, and maybe an archbishop or two ...

#151 ::: Carrie S. ::: (view all by) ::: October 15, 2015, 08:50 AM:

Seen this morning in two different places:
"Do to computer problems..."
"...but it was eluded to..."

#152 ::: D. Potter ::: (view all by) ::: October 15, 2015, 01:58 PM:

Carrie S. @151: I am so very tempted to complete those sentences:

"...as they would do unto you." and
"...the consternation of the police at the roadblock."

(I need to practice temptation-resistance. Tae kwon don't.)

#153 ::: Kevin Marks ::: (view all by) ::: October 15, 2015, 04:55 PM:

If bad bilingual puns are allowed…
They never understand my accent at that French Vietnamese restaurant. I asked for beef soup and they gave me an armchair.

(Phở tái vs fauteuil)

#154 ::: Sandy B. ::: (view all by) ::: October 15, 2015, 05:05 PM:

I almost struck myself down with a dreadful phrase just now. "Vested" in "vested interest", is as in "fully vested", not as in card tricks [and I'm not actually sure vesting a card has to do with card tricks... slow day indeed.]

#155 ::: Xopher Halftongue ::: (view all by) ::: October 28, 2015, 07:28 PM:

Seen in the wild: Our email had an outage:

Due to the service laps, we many need to...
Luckily we didn't have to go around and around to get it restored.

#156 ::: Anne Sheller ::: (view all by) ::: October 28, 2015, 07:38 PM:

It all goes around.....

#157 ::: David Goldfarb ::: (view all by) ::: October 28, 2015, 09:42 PM:

I just finished Last First Snow and felt compelled to re-read Two Serpents Rise. Early on, I ran across this one, which I didn't remember encountering before:

Sixty years after Dresediel Lex cast off the gods' yolk, its masters still demanded blood.
(Apologies to our hosts if this is tactless.)
#158 ::: Craft (Alchemy) ::: (view all by) ::: October 29, 2015, 06:31 AM:

Kevin Marks @153, on bad bilingual puns - this from my sister, recently:

"I asked my German friend what he'd done at the weekend and he said he'd been rearranging the furniture - apparently he's put the table in the bath - bad-um-tisch!"

#159 ::: Jeremy Leader ::: (view all by) ::: October 29, 2015, 01:19 PM:

Wow, a pun that's it's own rimshot, that's impressive!

#160 ::: Xopher Halftongue ::: (view all by) ::: October 30, 2015, 12:16 PM:

Reported seen in the wild: "No margarine for error."

I guess if they just barely squeezed by...

#161 ::: P J Evans ::: (view all by) ::: October 31, 2015, 02:44 AM:

Headline at SFGate:
Man saves dog from mountain lion in his underwear

(There were at least two comments with the response you would expect.)

#162 ::: Chris ::: (view all by) ::: November 02, 2015, 01:28 PM:

I just saw a flier for a "Fall Craft Bizarre".

#163 ::: Mary Aileen ::: (view all by) ::: November 02, 2015, 02:02 PM:

Chris (162): How bazaar.

Pittsfield, Massachusetts, has a "Bizarre Bazaar" every October.

#164 ::: TomB ::: (view all by) ::: November 10, 2015, 11:29 AM:

“We got out of the shoot extremely strong; very strong in the first few days.” — Tim Cook interview in The Telegraph.

#165 ::: Mary Aileen ::: (view all by) ::: November 10, 2015, 11:46 AM:

TomB (164): I take it that the interview is not about shooting a movie? 'The shoot' would make sense in that context. (It took me a couple of tries to read it differently, and thus to figure out what was wrong with the sentence).

#166 ::: Clifton ::: (view all by) ::: November 12, 2015, 09:28 PM:

Just seen: "They don't have a lead singer per say."

I should say not!

#167 ::: dcb ::: (view all by) ::: November 15, 2015, 09:41 AM:

Just seen: "They way as little as 150 grams."

#168 ::: Andrew M ::: (view all by) ::: November 18, 2015, 02:45 PM:

One for Fragano's collection: 'it is a natural part of human nature to be weary of what is new'.

#169 ::: Soon Lee ::: (view all by) ::: November 29, 2015, 09:59 PM:

Colleague when told about a problem: "I'll have to put my thinking tap on."

Which, makes good sense for initiating the flow of solutions.

#170 ::: Xopher Halftongue ::: (view all by) ::: January 10, 2016, 12:20 AM:

Not quite the usual, but an example of usage that clearly indicates the speaker didn't understand: heard a newsreader pronounce 'biopic' to rhyme with "my topic." BIO(graphical )PIC(ture), fool.

#171 ::: Xopher Halftongue ::: (view all by) ::: January 10, 2016, 12:23 AM:

The more usual kind: an article about a SECOND armed militia showing up in Oregon, claiming they wanted to "diffuse the situation."

The situation is potentially explosive, not hyperconcentrated.

Fortunately, even the snackless white-ring terrorists knew the presence of an armed perimeter would not be helpful.

#172 ::: Xopher Halftongue ::: (view all by) ::: January 11, 2016, 06:52 PM:

From an article on a new show: "The two actors are attached to toppling the pilot and series, if it scores a full pickup."

Why Autocorrect hasn't yet been indicted in the Hague for Crimes Against Humanity I cannot imagine.

#173 ::: Mary Aileen ::: (view all by) ::: January 11, 2016, 09:27 PM:

Xopher (172): I can't figure out what that's trying to say. Any clues?

#174 ::: Xopher Halftongue ::: (view all by) ::: January 11, 2016, 11:21 PM:

They meant "topping" as in "getting top billing." The two lead actors are on board for the pilot, and if it's picked up for a full season, they're in for that, too.

#175 ::: dana ::: (view all by) ::: January 12, 2016, 01:29 AM:

Came across a good one today: an "honor role student."

#176 ::: Mary Aileen ::: (view all by) ::: January 12, 2016, 01:11 PM:

Thanks, Xopher (174). I could tell that 'toppling' was the problem, but I wasn't familiar with that use of 'topping' so I couldn't fill in the blank.

#177 ::: Clifton ::: (view all by) ::: January 16, 2016, 11:23 PM:

Just saw a new one (to me) on a restaurant's website: "Prefix 5 Course Menu"

It took a while for it to dawn on me that they meant "prix fixé", and then I burst out laughing.

#178 ::: Clifton ::: (view all by) ::: January 23, 2016, 10:18 PM:

From a Marin newspaper website:
"Sausalito anchor-out Peter Romansky had his own explanation for the theater’s troubles.
“I’ve been kicked out of the theater and banned,” Romansky said. “I’ve put a curse on the theater and will not lift that curse until I get an apology.”"

anchor-out = anchorite?

#179 ::: P J Evans ::: (view all by) ::: January 23, 2016, 11:15 PM:

178
As he's from Sausalito, he might live on a boat.

I saw one this week: 'rain in' someone or something.

#180 ::: Carol Kimball ::: (view all by) ::: January 23, 2016, 11:33 PM:

A kid describing himself as a secret "sex attic".

#181 ::: Clifton ::: (view all by) ::: January 23, 2016, 11:50 PM:

Oh, that could be - I forgot Sausalito has this whole houseboat community. It may be a local or a nautical term.

#182 ::: Xopher Halftongue ::: (view all by) ::: January 24, 2016, 01:04 AM:

The Guardian said the authorities were "extolling" the public to stay off the roads.

"Praise to you, o Great Public! ...please stay off the roads."

#183 ::: Jeremy Leader ::: (view all by) ::: January 24, 2016, 02:10 AM:

I would guess that "anchor-out" refers to someone living on a boat that is anchored out away from the shore, as opposed to being tied up to a dock in a marina, or possibly tied to a permanent mooring buoy in a harbor. Living on a boat is sometimes cheaper than living on land, but tying up to a dock in a marina pretty much always costs money, and moorings in many harbors cost money. In most places anchoring your boat is free, though some places have regulations limiting where or for how long you can anchor.

#184 ::: CHip ::: (view all by) ::: January 24, 2016, 08:05 PM:

Broken parallelism has become so common that it probably doesn't qualify as a Dreadful Phrase any more, but I still am irritated by, e.g., "When he awoke from his dream he was sated, dizzy, and red sauce stained his shirt." (As I was taught ~50 years ago, either the first comma should be replaced by " and" or the entire sentence should be rebuilt.) Has this become so common that people's minds just fix it while processing?

wrt "anchor-out": I can see that applying to someone who can't afford a slip (e.g., F-18) and has to anchor out in the water instead. Can anyone from that area suggest whether such a person has a tiny boat to get to the shore and back or pays for a dock slot as semi-suburban landlubbers such as myself pay for parking when we go into the city?

#185 ::: Clifton ::: (view all by) ::: January 25, 2016, 03:09 PM:

CHip:
1) Syllepsis! Also known as zeugma! When it's used intentionally for humorous effect, it can be wonderful, as in Flanders and Swann's 'Have Some Madeira, M'Dear' - "She lifted the glass, her courage, her eyes, and his hopes." When unintentional, it can still be pretty funny but less wonderful.

I haven't seen enough of it to think it's become that much more common, though bad writing abounds.

#186 ::: Lee ::: (view all by) ::: January 25, 2016, 04:47 PM:

Clifton, #185: My favorite bit is, "When he said, 'What in Heaven?', she made no reply, up her mind, and a dash for the door!"

#187 ::: Mary Aileen ::: (view all by) ::: January 25, 2016, 07:45 PM:

A few weeks ago, I used 'cohering' as the verb form of 'coherent'. My mother didn't even blink.

#188 ::: Sandy B. ::: (view all by) ::: January 25, 2016, 08:28 PM:

I would use "cohere" in a physics context without blinking.

#189 ::: David Harmon ::: (view all by) ::: January 25, 2016, 09:02 PM:

Mary Aileen #187: I think that's entirely correct.

#190 ::: Mary Aileen ::: (view all by) ::: January 25, 2016, 09:27 PM:

David Harmon (189): "I wasn't cohering very well" to mean "I wasn't very coherent"? It doesn't sound correct to me.

#191 ::: Lee ::: (view all by) ::: January 25, 2016, 11:18 PM:

Mary Aileen, #190: Maybe not strictly correct, but I would accept it as a fannish back-formation without hesitation.

#192 ::: xeger ::: (view all by) ::: January 26, 2016, 01:19 AM:

Mary Aileen @ 190 ...
David Harmon (189): "I wasn't cohering very well" to mean "I wasn't very coherent"? It doesn't sound correct to me.

... which seems entirely apropos to me ;D

#193 ::: David Harmon ::: (view all by) ::: January 26, 2016, 03:14 AM:

Mary Aileen #190: Hmm. ISTM The main problem with "I wasn't cohering very well" would be a lack of context, as to in what manner you failed to cohere. However, presumably you weren't spontanously disassembling, or badly attempting to align your wavelengths, so the conversational context does tend to imply itself. ;-)

(Note to self: No matter how cold it was outside, don't order a pot of tea with dinner. That leads to insomnia and 3AM postings.)

#194 ::: Bill Higgins-- Beam Jockey ::: (view all by) ::: January 26, 2016, 08:37 AM:

We no longer use coherers in our wireless apparatus, but a long time ago they were, as the kids say these days, A Thing.

#195 ::: Mary Aileen ::: (view all by) ::: January 26, 2016, 08:42 AM:

I am corrected.

Lee (191), "fannish backformation" is about right. As I said, my mother didn't even blink at it.

#196 ::: Mary Aileen ::: (view all by) ::: January 26, 2016, 08:46 AM:

Oh, and xeger (192) has the right of it: I was still no more than 3/4 awake when I came up with that.

#197 ::: KeithS ::: (view all by) ::: January 27, 2016, 10:14 PM:

A license plate rather than a phrase, but today I saw "ROUT 66". The owner had clearly had the plate for a long time, too.

#198 ::: CHip ::: (view all by) ::: January 27, 2016, 10:39 PM:

Clifton: NOT syllepsis, and certainly not zeugma as I learned it (and Wikipedia defines it). These have a parallel structure (as shown in other comments), with sometimes a small mismatch ("he works his work, I mine"), so that phrases could be exchanged with minor disagreement in non-zeugma syllepses; compare the result to "he was red sauce stained his shirt and dizzy".

#199 ::: SunflowerP ::: (view all by) ::: January 28, 2016, 01:58 AM:

Found while down an Internet rabbithole: '... but maybe that’s just pegging the question here.'

#200 ::: Pfusand ::: (view all by) ::: January 28, 2016, 09:23 AM:

Just seen:

"Beauty is truly in the high of the beholder."

No, not meant humorously or punnishly or ironically. *Sigh*

#201 ::: Rainflame ::: (view all by) ::: January 28, 2016, 11:03 PM:

"waived goodbye"

no, that's okay, you don't have to bid me farewell

#202 ::: GlendaP ::: (view all by) ::: January 29, 2016, 02:17 PM:

Just seen on twitter:

"Your knockers are overly twisted"

#203 ::: Cassy B. ::: (view all by) ::: January 29, 2016, 02:37 PM:

GlendaP, ouch.

#204 ::: Lee ::: (view all by) ::: January 29, 2016, 02:55 PM:

GlendP, #202: Sadly, I can mentally reconstruct the format of the discussion in which that occurred, and make several guesses about the possible topic.

#205 ::: GlendaP ::: (view all by) ::: January 29, 2016, 03:34 PM:

Lee #204: The topic was innocuous enough, but yes, the format of the discussion was all too familiar.

#206 ::: Cath ::: (view all by) ::: January 31, 2016, 12:03 PM:

Sighted in a discussion on feminism: if you don't oppress women it will lead them "to pants wearing and the wonton urge to vote."

#207 ::: Cadbury Moose ::: (view all by) ::: January 31, 2016, 06:58 PM:

Someone will be in the soup over that one.

#208 ::: Cath ::: (view all by) ::: January 31, 2016, 07:45 PM:

Cadbury Moose @207

The jokes just write themselves, don't they? Myself, I look forward to the day when dumpling emancipation is no longer controversial.

#209 ::: Carrie S. ::: (view all by) ::: February 03, 2016, 02:32 PM:

"[Her condition] was then exasperated by..."

#210 ::: Mary Aileen ::: (view all by) ::: February 03, 2016, 05:23 PM:

Carrie S. (209): I don't know, I'm frequently in a condition of being exasperated by things. ;)

#211 ::: Xopher Halftongue ::: (view all by) ::: February 03, 2016, 08:47 PM:

Heard a newsreader say that a killer was also wanted for the "disembodiment" of a young woman.

#212 ::: Lin Daniel ::: (view all by) ::: February 07, 2016, 12:49 AM:

[Some effort] has been for not.

#213 ::: Lee ::: (view all by) ::: February 07, 2016, 02:40 AM:

Lin, #212: Hee! I saw that one too.

#214 ::: David Goldfarb ::: (view all by) ::: February 07, 2016, 03:10 AM:

So did I. (I was wondering whether the Lee I've been seeing there was you.)

#215 ::: P J Evans ::: (view all by) ::: February 07, 2016, 12:01 PM:

212-214: *snicker*

#216 ::: Tatterbots ::: (view all by) ::: February 07, 2016, 04:54 PM:

"She let him too it." (left him to it)

Seen in an otherwise high quality fanfic, so I have to attribute it to authorial lack of sleep or the like.

#217 ::: Lin Daniel ::: (view all by) ::: February 10, 2016, 12:47 PM:

from my hippy dipping days

#218 ::: Carrie S. ::: (view all by) ::: February 11, 2016, 12:01 PM:

"[He] lived in one of the refugee buildings – thrown up after the rest of Brooklyn was raised to the ground by the War."

:twitches:

#219 ::: Lee ::: (view all by) ::: February 12, 2016, 06:35 PM:

Seen quoted by someone elseNet, in a similarly-themed sub-thread:

"You should never pleasurize someone else’s work."

#220 ::: Mary Aileen ::: (view all by) ::: February 12, 2016, 07:14 PM:

Lee (219): That sounds like it means that the writer doesn't approve of slash.

#221 ::: Sandy B. ::: (view all by) ::: February 13, 2016, 05:48 PM:

Just seen onweb: "flee market".

I mean, I don't like them, but I'm not that melodramatic. Or fast.

#222 ::: Xopher Halftongue ::: (view all by) ::: February 14, 2016, 11:25 PM:

The other day, one of the usual crowd was foaming on about "right ring femisnt."

Even what they MEANT doesn't make sense.

#223 ::: Fragano Ledgister ::: (view all by) ::: February 15, 2016, 12:56 PM:

Xopher #222: I've got a left ring and a right ring. One of those might be involved.

#224 ::: Xopher Halftongue ::: (view all by) ::: February 15, 2016, 07:43 PM:

I pointed out that before SSM was legal (it still gives me a little thrill to type that) some gay couples used to wear wedding rings on the right hand as a protest. Someone else pointed out that that's wayyy too logical.

#225 ::: SunflowerP ::: (view all by) ::: February 21, 2016, 03:57 AM:

Reason given for editing a forum post: 'forgot to inbed link'.

#226 ::: OtterB ::: (view all by) ::: February 21, 2016, 08:53 AM:

I'm not sure it counts, because the usage is correct and quite clear in context, but it amuses me so I thought I'd share.

I was completing a form about respite care for my daughter with special needs. In a series of questions about medical and technological needs (do they have any assistive technology devices, do they use a CPAP when they sleep...) it asked "Does this person use oxygen?"

Well, yes, but not in the way the question was intended.

#227 ::: Erik Nelson ::: (view all by) ::: February 21, 2016, 08:53 PM:

#218 throwing up a building gives m an image of a great beast vomiting bricks

#228 ::: Xopher Halftongue ::: (view all by) ::: February 22, 2016, 12:46 PM:

Erik, one of my friends in high school German class had, as his catchphrase, 'Iß den Dom!'—which is ungrammatical German for "Eat the cathedral!" as a command.

He drew many a picture of people devouring cathedrals. One of them was a multi-panel cartoon, and in the penultimate panel the Domesser, his head distorted into the shape of the Kölner Dom, announces that he's feeling ill. The last panel shows him bent over a pile of bricks and rubble.

When our summer exchange group visited Köln, we posed with mouths open and teeth bared near the buttresses.

My gods. That was FORTY years ago this summer. I am old.

#229 ::: cajunfj40 ::: (view all by) ::: February 24, 2016, 12:11 PM:

Found today:

"ALL MATERIALS ARE TO BE PACKAGED IN A MANOR THAT WILL PREVENT OUTSIDE CONTAMINATION FROM COMING IN CONTACT WITH THE MATERIAL, AND PREVENT SURFACE SCRATCHING DURING SHIPMENT OF THE PRODUCT."

Now picturing statuesque and stately homes being shipped around the world, with product safely ensconced within in a comfy chair. The look is slightly marred by every piece of furniture - and every other object within the house - being covered in a high-tech version of those clear vinyl covers you see on couches in the living room of many a house. The fire is, unfortunately, behind a high-tech version of one of those glass fronts. The drink on the sideboard is in a complicated vessel that would look more at home in a zero-gravity space station. Said homes have a cleanroom ventilation system installed, maintaining positive pressure within at all times. Doors and windows are locked, of course, and the very high-tech alarm system is always armed. The butler finds his dignity somewhat affronted by having to wear a cleanroom "bunny suit" as they check on the product and see to its needs throughout the journey. At least they can be satisfied that their white gloves always come away perfectly clean upon touching any surface in this immaculate house.

#230 ::: Lee ::: (view all by) ::: March 02, 2016, 09:39 AM:

From an article in the Wall Street Journal:

"Liberals may have been fond of claiming that Republicans were all closet bigots and that tax cuts were a form of racial prejudice, but the accusation rang hollow because the evidence for it was so tendentious."

The word he was looking for was "tenuous".

#231 ::: Sandy B. ::: (view all by) ::: March 02, 2016, 10:22 AM:

From this article on lead poisoning, "infant morality".

Five minutes earlier I saw "sacrificing our children on the alter", but that had the dubious excuse of being an op-ed .

#232 ::: Xopher Halftongue ::: (view all by) ::: March 08, 2016, 12:42 PM:

Guy on radio: [tells an illustrative story] That's one antidote, but we have studies and statistics that show the same thing.

May have been a momentary lapse. He was otherwise quite cogent.

#233 ::: Jacque ::: (view all by) ::: March 08, 2016, 01:39 PM:

Gah.

You "hone" an edge. You "home in on" a target.

If you "hone in on" an answer, you make my teeth hurt.

#234 ::: Em ::: (view all by) ::: March 08, 2016, 10:17 PM:

Seen in the wild today: "he cagouled her until she gave in".

Lightweight raincoats are very persuasive.

#235 ::: Xopher Halftongue ::: (view all by) ::: March 09, 2016, 11:51 PM:

On a Maintenance door card: "I would like to set a time to inseminate. Please call me at [number]."

The person who showed it to me opined that it was the opening of a porn scenario, but I think the person just meant "exterminate."

#236 ::: Xopher Halftongue ::: (view all by) ::: March 09, 2016, 11:52 PM:

Come to think of it, the porn version of the Daleks would be saying "INSEMINATE! INSEMINATE!"

Consensually, of course.

#237 ::: Bill Higgins-- Beam Jockey ::: (view all by) ::: March 10, 2016, 12:56 PM:

In #233 Jacque doesn't mention the text that was bugging her, but perhaps it was page 19 of the Feb. 29-March 13 issue of Aviation Week and Space Technology. In an article about a counter-drone hijacking experiment during the Rose Bowl game, Graham Warwick quotes Randy Villahermosa of the Aerospace Corporation:

"There were 100,000 people, 100,000 cellphones, Wi-Fi, satellite and terrestrial communications active during game time [...] We were still able to hone in, detect the drone, and exert control."

#238 ::: Ian C. Racey ::: (view all by) ::: March 11, 2016, 04:26 PM:

From an answer on Quora: "... you spend a lot of time cowtailing to everyone around you--your supervisors as well as your client, your tenants, and the general public."

#239 ::: Lin Daniel ::: (view all by) ::: March 11, 2016, 11:43 PM:

Found in a help forum about adding watermarks to images on a website, whether to add to image or:

...adding watermark "in the fly".

#240 ::: Bruce H. ::: (view all by) ::: March 12, 2016, 01:59 AM:

>> ... you spend a lot of time cowtailing to everyone around you ...

This one took me a few seconds, because in east Africa (and probably other places) there is such a thing as a fly whisk made of the hair of a cow or bull's tail, so I imagined cowtailing as a metaphor for some helpful act in service of keeping pests away from one's superiors and senior colleagues.

(I brought a bull tail whisk back from my trip, but found that I strongly prefer the western fly swatter.)

#241 ::: Mary Aileen ::: (view all by) ::: March 12, 2016, 08:58 AM:

'Cow tailing' actually makes a certain amount of sense. Or at least I can see how they got to it. What we have here is someone who has heard the phrase 'kowtowing to' but is not familiar with the word itself and has never seen it spelled. So they turned it into something familiar.

#242 ::: Lee ::: (view all by) ::: March 12, 2016, 12:14 PM:

My partner and I call that an Inverse Gazebo Error. A regular Gazebo Error is when you don't know how to pronounce a word because you've only seen it written.

#243 ::: Ian C. Racey ::: (view all by) ::: March 12, 2016, 12:35 PM:

I remember having that very thing happen when I first encountered the word "kowtow"; for a while I assumed it was pronounced "co-toe".

#244 ::: Mary Aileen ::: (view all by) ::: March 12, 2016, 01:06 PM:

I just heard someone say 'pneumonic device' (talking about how to remember thing).

#245 ::: Jim Parish ::: (view all by) ::: March 12, 2016, 06:47 PM:

#241 Mary Ailenn: It's a common enough phenomenon that linguists have coined a name for it: "eggcorn". ("Eggcorn" for "acorn" is the prototypical example.) Take a look at The Eggcorn Database for more examples. (I'm rather proud of having brought the phrase "beyond approach" to the attention of the compilers of the database.)

#246 ::: Jim Parish ::: (view all by) ::: March 12, 2016, 06:48 PM:

Aargh. I was being so careful to get the "A" in "Aileen", and wound up with a double-"n". Sorry about that!

#247 ::: Mary Aileen ::: (view all by) ::: March 12, 2016, 08:22 PM:

Jim Parish (246): Don't worry about it. You got both parts of my name in there, that's the important thing.

#248 ::: TomB ::: (view all by) ::: March 13, 2016, 03:31 AM:

I worked at a place where the design documents and code comments were required to define all the mnemonics they contained. In practice it was almost always misspelled as 'pneumonics'. It was scary. All it took was one person to misspell it and everyone else would copy it. It was like a plague.

#249 ::: David Harmon ::: (view all by) ::: March 13, 2016, 08:00 AM:

TomB #248: <low-hanging-fruit> The pneumonic plague? </low-hanging-fruit>

#250 ::: SunflowerP ::: (view all by) ::: March 13, 2016, 08:48 PM:

Lee@242 - I am so adopting 'Gazebo Error'. Much more concise than 'I-often-see-it-written-I-never-hear-it-spoken Error'. And when one spends much of one's time among geeks, one has a use for a concise way to say that!

#251 ::: David Harmon ::: (view all by) ::: March 13, 2016, 10:19 PM:

Lee #242, SunflowerP #250: Hmm. "Gazebo Error" makes me think of a very different sort of error:

Early in the history of D&D, one of the sample adventures¹ started in a house with a gazebo behind it. A significant number of 10 and 12-year old players² were told by their similarly-aged DMs "behind the building, you see a gazebo", assumed it was some kind of monster, and responded with "I attack the gazebo!", leaving the DM snickering and/or frantically trying to figure out what AC and hit points a gazebo had.

¹ I forget whether it was in the Basic set or the first AD&D adventure booklet.

² Including me, IIRC. ;-)

#252 ::: David Goldfarb ::: (view all by) ::: March 13, 2016, 11:08 PM:

One of those was written up as Eric and the Dread Gazebo.

#253 ::: Lee ::: (view all by) ::: March 14, 2016, 01:14 AM:

#251/252: Yes, that's where it came from. It seems pretty obvious that the player in question had never heard anyone say "gazebo" and thought it was pronounced GAZE-bo, and that's why the repeated explanations of "It's a gazebo!" weren't penetrating.

#254 ::: David Harmon ::: (view all by) ::: March 14, 2016, 01:31 AM:

Lee #253: I simply didn't know what a gazebo was, because I was 10 years old, and lived in a levittown where nobody had space for gazebos. (My DM did pronounce it properly.)

#255 ::: TomB ::: (view all by) ::: March 14, 2016, 03:54 AM:

Your gazebo is no match for my friend's pergola.

#256 ::: estelendur ::: (view all by) ::: March 14, 2016, 12:44 PM:

I coined the term "to be /maizld/" (which is spelled 'misled') for the Gazebo Effect. :) This is because I saw it written much more than I heard it spoken, and was, well, misled as to the pronunciation. (I am not the only person I've met who invented this specific term for it, either.)

#257 ::: Carrie S. ::: (view all by) ::: March 14, 2016, 01:30 PM:

The Boyfriend uses /'maizld/ to describe malicious misinformation. /mis'led/ can be by accident or through ignorance.

#258 ::: Jeremy Leader ::: (view all by) ::: March 14, 2016, 03:40 PM:

When I was a kid, Watergate was in the news a lot. It was quite a while before I discovered that the word "indict" that I saw in the newspaper, and the word that I heard pronounced as "indite" on the news, which had similar meanings, were actually the same word.

#259 ::: Jacque ::: (view all by) ::: March 15, 2016, 02:27 PM:

Huh. Here's a variant of the Grocer's apostrophe I haven't encountered before:

We carry GAGS' & GIFTS'
#260 ::: Tamlyn ::: (view all by) ::: March 15, 2016, 06:42 PM:

My embarrassing couldn't pronounce word was archaeology. I mangled it horribly when standing in front of a university professor saying I wanted to study it. No excuse of being a child there :s

I mispronounce far too many words. My sister is the only one who corrects me, and as she's on the other side of the country, I don't get the corrections enough to have an effect.

#261 ::: dcb ::: (view all by) ::: March 15, 2016, 06:51 PM:

Seen in the wild: "if you ever lose site of humanity, go watch a marathon".

#262 ::: Tom Whitmore ::: (view all by) ::: March 15, 2016, 07:23 PM:

(Or is that the Grocers' apostrophe?)

#263 ::: Cassy B. ::: (view all by) ::: March 15, 2016, 10:53 PM:

My always-mispronounced word (and it drives my husband batty) is "mosaic". I consistently say "mo-ZY-ic", rather than "mo-ZAY-ic". I have no idea why, and I can't seem to train myself out of it. All I end up doing is stuttering on the word...

#264 ::: Lin Daniel ::: (view all by) ::: March 18, 2016, 10:27 AM:

Seen in an article on political rallies

yelling and causing a raucous 

#265 ::: Bruce H. ::: (view all by) ::: March 23, 2016, 05:40 PM:

From the National Weather Service:

MANY ROADS ARE CLOSURED ACROSS NORTHEAST COLORADO.

I wish I could believe this was written by a robot.

#266 ::: Lin Daniel ::: (view all by) ::: March 26, 2016, 05:07 PM:

Found on a menu, probably found on many menus these days

Chinese Chicken Chop Salad

It stands out because the rest of the menu is done very well. Complete sentences and everything.

#267 ::: Tom Whitmore ::: (view all by) ::: March 26, 2016, 05:10 PM:

"Chop salad" is a common term for a chopped salad -- Google it and you'll find many examples. It may be a dreadful phrase in some ways, but it's a very well known usage.

#268 ::: Em ::: (view all by) ::: March 26, 2016, 05:27 PM:

Making the rounds on the Canadian internet at the moment, a woman in Alberta wants to launch a "kudatah" against the provincial NDP government.

#269 ::: Lin Daniel ::: (view all by) ::: March 26, 2016, 05:33 PM:

From the same place as the Chop Salad comes the online menu choices of

Choose up to 1 option.


I guess 0 is a choice.

#270 ::: Lin Daniel ::: (view all by) ::: March 26, 2016, 05:39 PM:

Tom @267
It still makes me cringe. And it stood out in an otherwise well done print menu.

#271 ::: Lee ::: (view all by) ::: March 26, 2016, 07:34 PM:

Talking about menu abominations always makes me think of "with au jus sauce", which shows up in places upscale enough that they really ought to know better.

#272 ::: P J Evans ::: (view all by) ::: March 26, 2016, 09:27 PM:

271
or even just 'with au jus'. Aaarrrggghhh!

#273 ::: David Goldfarb ::: (view all by) ::: March 27, 2016, 12:01 AM:

I once saw, "with au jus, in a sauce of its own natural juices."

#274 ::: Cadbury Moose ::: (view all by) ::: March 27, 2016, 04:58 AM:

Department of redundancy department on line one for you....

#275 ::: David Harmon ::: (view all by) ::: March 27, 2016, 07:28 AM:

Lin Daniel #269: Well yes, you could skip the free side dish, or some other category. If that's showing for entree options, you might have a problem, depending how the system is setup.

#276 ::: Xopher Halftongue ::: (view all by) ::: March 27, 2016, 06:08 PM:

Saw another restaurant offering a "pre-fix" Easter dinner. It was on the way home from lunch, so I went home and had a suffix.

#277 ::: Cadbury Moose ::: (view all by) ::: March 27, 2016, 06:47 PM:

On restaurant menus, the somewhat bizarre Chinese translations can be entertaining ("Fresh Cobster") or a trap for the unwary ("Chicken in black bean sauce. Not very hot." - they'd omitted the 'e'on the end of 'Note', to our considerable surprise).

www.engrish.com usually has some "interesting" translations, like the fire extinguisher, or the worrying No Smoking sign.

Eek!

#278 ::: Michael I ::: (view all by) ::: March 27, 2016, 09:31 PM:

Just got a notcie from a Meetup group that the group is having a Meetup at the "Cheery blossom kite festival."

#279 ::: dcb ::: (view all by) ::: March 28, 2016, 06:33 AM:

I've just read that rabbits of the same gender will fight "for mating rites and nesting sites."

#280 ::: Mary Aileen ::: (view all by) ::: March 28, 2016, 09:18 AM:

dcb (279): Do rabbit mating rites involve giving each other brightly colored eggs?

#281 ::: dcb ::: (view all by) ::: March 28, 2016, 05:44 PM:

Mary Aileen @280: Not so I've noticed... :-)

#282 ::: Xopher Halftongue ::: (view all by) ::: March 28, 2016, 08:16 PM:

Someone I know just called someone else a "died in the wool conservative" on Facebook.

I suppose if you're going to die, there are worse places than in the wool.

#283 ::: dotless ı ::: (view all by) ::: March 29, 2016, 03:04 PM:

Cadbury Moose@277: Victor Mair's posts on Language Log often try to tease apart particularly odd translations into English, like "spicy fried broccoli is better to die" on a menu, or "China Transfinite Governance". Sometimes there's a really obvious explanation; other times it takes some exploration, conjecture, and a trip through a bad dictionary. The "lost in translation" tag on the blog makes for fun browsing.

#284 ::: Carrie S. ::: (view all by) ::: March 29, 2016, 03:27 PM:

"maniacle laughter"

My first glance skipped over the I and I was left wondering why manacles would laugh.

#285 ::: Carrie S. ::: (view all by) ::: March 29, 2016, 03:28 PM:

Trying to shake loose a server error.

#286 ::: estelendur ::: (view all by) ::: March 30, 2016, 10:03 AM:

Seen in a comment section: "someone ... cutting me up in traffic."

#287 ::: Xopher Halftongue ::: (view all by) ::: March 30, 2016, 07:02 PM:

In an otherwise wonderful article about a wonderful institution, an online magazine said the institution "strives to affect positive change." In the HEADLINE.

#288 ::: Carrie S. ::: (view all by) ::: March 30, 2016, 07:39 PM:

"Civil rights icon paying #amish to another civil rights icon"

If you've ever seen the picture of a dog getting sprayed with a hose with the caption "WHAARGARBL" on it? That is my face right now.

#289 ::: Bruce H. ::: (view all by) ::: April 03, 2016, 08:08 PM:

From Wikipedia:

Elephants loom large in the life of people of the Lugenda River Valley.

#290 ::: Xopher Halftongue ::: (view all by) ::: April 03, 2016, 08:55 PM:

Someone on Twitter today said she'd be "hard broken" if her partner (did something untrusting).

#291 ::: Jeremy Leader ::: (view all by) ::: April 04, 2016, 08:43 PM:

Bruce H. @289: isn't that just the intransitive verb "to loom", meaning to appear large, often over or above something (e.g. storm clouds or mountains are often described as "looming" over the scenery)? Or is it a mis-spelling of some other phrase that I'm overlooking?

#292 ::: Bruce H. ::: (view all by) ::: April 04, 2016, 10:14 PM:

Two things struck me about this:
1. Of course elephants loom large. That's what elephants do. It's not clear to me what this choice of words adds to the article. (See Orwell on cliches.)
2. It sounds like it was written by a 10 year old who had just learned about alliteration.

#293 ::: Rymenhild ::: (view all by) ::: April 10, 2016, 02:56 PM:

I just saw a job listing for a position at the Day School of the Scared Heart.

#294 ::: Bill Higgins-- Beam Jockey ::: (view all by) ::: April 12, 2016, 11:50 AM:

From Talking Points Memo today:

"We are in all new unchartered grounds," said Holland Redfield, a delegate from the U.S. Virgin Islands who has attended the convention as a delegate multiple times beginning in the 1980s.

Unchartered grounds, indeed.

#295 ::: TomB ::: (view all by) ::: April 15, 2016, 06:45 PM:

From a smartphone review:

The power button has a seriously tactical design engraved into it.
I think they meant "tactile".

#296 ::: Jeremy Leader ::: (view all by) ::: April 15, 2016, 11:19 PM:

It would depend on the context of the review; in some circles, "tactical" has come to mean something like "martial" (but more manly). Things like clothing, footwear, backpacks, shoulder bags, flashlights, even food can all now be marketed as "tactical", meaning they're available in one or more militaristic shades or camouflage patterns, and may have the right patterns of straps and buckles, or be implied to be more durable (without necessarily living up to that claim, of course).

I could imagine a deeply knurled black button, that resembled something on a firearm, being described as "tactical" by someone engaging in that sort of marketing.

#297 ::: Em ::: (view all by) ::: April 16, 2016, 10:57 AM:

I have a computer case that was marketed as "tactical" and "stealth". This despite having pretty light-up LEDs inside it.

#298 ::: TomB ::: (view all by) ::: April 16, 2016, 04:28 PM:

That's funny. In the context of the review, the engraving made it easier to distinguish the power button by touch, so I think "tactile" would make the most sense. But it could be they really meant "tactical". It would be easy for me to miss that because I am really not into "tactical" styling.

#299 ::: Rainflame ::: (view all by) ::: April 16, 2016, 11:07 PM:

From a free Kindle book (worth every penny)

Salesmen hocking mattresses (I wonder if the boss knows about that)

He decided to try a new tact

In the end it was all for not

#300 ::: thomas ::: (view all by) ::: April 17, 2016, 03:28 AM:

When I found out it was in Mozambique, I hoped the Lugenda River would be close to the other famous source of alliteration, the great, grey-green, greasy Limpopo River, all set about with fever trees

Sadly, they're at opposite ends of the country. I suppose the elephant-looming is still probably about the same size.

#301 ::: KeithS ::: (view all by) ::: April 19, 2016, 05:59 PM:

From a web page I happened to have stumbled across: "most of the grudge work can be done automatically using a small utility I've created". While I have done some projects out of spite, I don't think that's what they meant.

#302 ::: Tom Whitmore ::: (view all by) ::: April 19, 2016, 06:35 PM:

Not necessarily a Dreadful Phrase, but can anyone tell me why the page linked to about medieval illuminated manuscripts over in the open thread (this one) says "The fact that these texts were bound with animal skins makes them pretty metal" as one of the two sentences in its description? Do you think they meant "meta" rather than "metal"? The metal portion of the binding doesn't quite fit another interpretation, at least in my head....

#303 ::: David Goldfarb ::: (view all by) ::: April 19, 2016, 07:34 PM:

I feel pretty sure that "metal" is meant. I'm a bit fuzzy on just what "metal" means, but it's something along the lines of "good/cool in a way that is in accordance with the behavior of heavy metal musicians". (Which definition is itself not in the least metal.)

Compare The Most Metal Deaths in Middle-Earth, Ranked.

#304 ::: thomas ::: (view all by) ::: April 19, 2016, 09:51 PM:

I would have said metal meant 'in accordance with the aesthetics of heavy-metal music' rather than related to the behaviour of the musicians.

Back in the middle ages it wouldn't have been either meta or metal to bind books made of animal guts with animal skins. If you did it today you could make a case for either. Though not both; I think they're mutually exclusive.

#305 ::: David Goldfarb ::: (view all by) ::: April 19, 2016, 10:43 PM:

Okay, reasonable correction. I'd say, of course, that there's a certain natural overlap between the aesthetics of the music and the behavior of the musicians.

#306 ::: Em ::: (view all by) ::: April 20, 2016, 12:31 AM:

You could make a book cover that was both meta and metal if you then added a dust-jacket with spikes on it, I think.

#307 ::: Bruce H. ::: (view all by) ::: April 20, 2016, 05:10 PM:

From the History Things web site: "Scroll through the gallery and bare witness to some of history’s greatest images."

So is this like Heinlein's Fair Witnesses but without the white robe?

Additional annoyance, the post promises 30 great images, but the navigation bar shows 52 pages.

#308 ::: Tom Whitmore ::: (view all by) ::: April 20, 2016, 05:15 PM:

Hey, a little over half the images are great ones -- that's a pretty good average!

#309 ::: Paul A. ::: (view all by) ::: April 20, 2016, 07:41 PM:

Only if you weight the images equally; experience of online galleries of "great images" suggests to me that the remaining 22 images will be ads, and therefore lack greatness disproportionately to their mere number.

#310 ::: SunflowerP ::: (view all by) ::: April 21, 2016, 01:59 AM:

From an article in the online Smithsonian Magazine (from whom I expect better): '... Oculus headsets that jettison us through time and space....'

#311 ::: Xopher Halftongue ::: (view all by) ::: April 30, 2016, 04:58 PM:

Spotted in the wild: someone said that the right wing assumes that their "freedom" includes the right to "impose their fews on others."

#312 ::: Xopher Halftongue ::: (view all by) ::: May 08, 2016, 04:43 PM:

And now, at quite a different location elseweb, someone else said that he'd been told something "a view times."

I'll be back in a bit. I just have to smash this desk to splinters with my head.

#313 ::: Carrie S. ::: (view all by) ::: May 08, 2016, 04:46 PM:

Damn you, autocorrect? V and F are right next to each other and the thing might have decided he forgot the I.

#314 ::: Xopher Halftongue ::: (view all by) ::: May 08, 2016, 09:39 PM:

Mayyyybe, but the words are also very similar in sound. Still, one can hope.

#315 ::: Em ::: (view all by) ::: May 08, 2016, 10:24 PM:

Read a story today in which someone ordered lomaine noodles for lunch.

#316 ::: Xopher Halftongue ::: (view all by) ::: May 09, 2016, 08:26 PM:

With a side salad of ro mein lettuce.

#317 ::: Rainflame ::: (view all by) ::: May 10, 2016, 11:12 PM:

Speak my peace

My sorted past

A riff in the relationship

Maybe I should stop downloading free books for my Kindle

#318 ::: Em ::: (view all by) ::: May 17, 2016, 03:44 PM:

Went past an advertisement today for an apartment which has a photon.

#319 ::: Michael I ::: (view all by) ::: May 17, 2016, 04:11 PM:

Em@318

One would hope it has plenty of photons.

Otherwise the interior would be very difficult to see...

#320 ::: Em ::: (view all by) ::: May 17, 2016, 08:47 PM:

I'm guessing it bounces around a lot. Mirrors everywhere.

#321 ::: Lee ::: (view all by) ::: May 17, 2016, 09:40 PM:

Must be for light sleepers...

#322 ::: OtterB ::: (view all by) ::: June 15, 2016, 10:27 AM:

From an essay in the online Washington Post: "I would intend to write after tucking [the children] in at night; instead I would end up tidying the living room while my husband clambered for time with me."

Pretty sure her husband was clamoring, not clambering.

#323 ::: cajunfj40 ::: (view all by) ::: June 24, 2016, 08:53 AM:

In the inbox today (regrettably not caught by the spam filter) the title of an e-mail was "Gaooool!!". Thought by me: "Why are they seeming really excited about jail?" followed by looking over to the actual e-mail in the preview pane and seeing it was about European style football, and the iconic yell of the commentators when a goal is scored.

Hmm. Now I'm thinking about commentators for fast-paced courtroom events...

#324 ::: eric ::: (view all by) ::: June 24, 2016, 09:09 AM:

cajunfj40 @323 -- The best example of this recently (or perhaps, just of a partisan commentator completely losing it over a goal) was from the recent Iceland match. (thinking about it, it's probably what you got)

Iceland, a small nation, without much in the way of footballers managed to finish second in their group with a goal in the last 30 seconds of their match to win, when they'd been on their heels defending for the last half hour, and a mistake doing that would have sent them home. I'm not a major soccer fan, but it was the soccer equivalent of a mic drop.

(And by small, something over 2% of the country was _in_ the stadium in France watching the game. )

#325 ::: Paul A. ::: (view all by) ::: June 24, 2016, 12:31 PM:

Reading an interview with the producer of an upcoming TV series; the interviewer invites him to "wet the appetite" of the audience.

#326 ::: David Goldfarb ::: (view all by) ::: June 24, 2016, 04:11 PM:

In the comments of an article about the latest episode of Game of Thrones:

why don’t the Umber’s rule all of Westeros? They seem to be about the only people in the land with the combination of shields, armor and spears. If they don’t get hit in the rear by cavalry, they could concur all.
I suppose if you've beaten everyone into submission, they then have to agree with you.

#327 ::: Em ::: (view all by) ::: June 25, 2016, 11:08 AM:

"I agree whole hardly".

#328 ::: dcb ::: (view all by) ::: July 03, 2016, 04:04 PM:

"...felt in know way restricted."

#329 ::: HelenS ::: (view all by) ::: July 03, 2016, 11:00 PM:

"Our dresses give you the instant hourly glass figure."

#330 ::: dcb ::: (view all by) ::: July 04, 2016, 09:31 AM:

"...people would rather watch the tennis with their dog as apposed to their partner."

#331 ::: P J Evans ::: (view all by) ::: July 04, 2016, 06:50 PM:

From an SFGate story on Juno:
After reaching a max speed of 165,000 mph — fast enough to fly around Earth in nine minutes — Juno will slam on the breaks by firing its engines. This is where things get tricky.

I don't know it is automiscorrect or someone who's using speech-to-text an not checking it.

#332 ::: SunflowerP ::: (view all by) ::: July 07, 2016, 04:57 AM:

P J Evans@331 - Them's the brakes.

#333 ::: Rainflame ::: (view all by) ::: July 07, 2016, 11:07 PM:

"what do you guise think?"

#334 ::: Carrie S. ::: (view all by) ::: July 16, 2016, 01:36 AM:

"After the events of the movie, Our Hero goes on the lamb..."

I, um, don't think I've ever seen it called that before...

#335 ::: Michael I ::: (view all by) ::: July 16, 2016, 07:58 AM:

Carrie S@334

Said the narrator sheepishly?

:-)

#336 ::: HelenS ::: (view all by) ::: July 16, 2016, 09:12 PM:

"After reading through this, I don’t want anyone pronouncing Ralph Lauren’s last name in the same alliteration as Sophia Lauren [sic]."

#337 ::: Rainflame ::: (view all by) ::: July 16, 2016, 11:29 PM:

"Don't be a pre Madonna"

#338 ::: Tatterbots ::: (view all by) ::: July 20, 2016, 11:41 AM:

On tipping in restaurants: "Its a potential mind-field."

#339 ::: Bruce H. ::: (view all by) ::: July 27, 2016, 01:40 AM:

So, a guy I know was perusing the a.s.s.m archives (purely for scholarly purposes you understand) and came across a story where "phonemes" was used where "pheromones" was intended. The story was old enough that I don't think this was a Cupertino (http://itre.cis.upenn.edu/myl/languagelog/archives/002911.html).

In a medical device testing job, I encountered another substitution that was a Cupertino. Many of the test scripts required a recirculating tube set, and endless loop of tubing filled with water to exercise the pump on the device. The problem was that in some of the the scripts, "recirculating" had been changed to "recalculating". I wondered about this, and fixed it when I found it, but never investigated. Several years later I found out that if MS Word doesn't recognize "recirculating", "recalculating" is its first suggested correction.

#340 ::: dana ::: (view all by) ::: July 27, 2016, 10:20 AM:

"shouldering on"

#341 ::: eric ::: (view all by) ::: July 27, 2016, 12:14 PM:

"religious anti-science sediment"

#342 ::: Buddha Buck ::: (view all by) ::: July 27, 2016, 01:08 PM:

@341: Well, some religions believe man was made from mud, so I guess it could be right...

#343 ::: P J Evans ::: (view all by) ::: July 27, 2016, 01:09 PM:

In connection with other events this week:
nomination by acclimation

#344 ::: P J Evans ::: (view all by) ::: July 29, 2016, 12:13 AM:

And another:
NOW comes the coup de gras

#345 ::: P J Evans ::: (view all by) ::: July 29, 2016, 12:13 AM:

And another:
NOW comes the coup de gras

#346 ::: P J Evans ::: (view all by) ::: July 29, 2016, 12:14 AM:

@#$%& Win10 and IE.

#347 ::: Craft (Alchemy) ::: (view all by) ::: July 29, 2016, 04:21 AM:

PJ Evans @344: In my experience (UK) LARPers and tabletop roleplayers produce that one all the time - usually spoken, though; they'll spell it correctly, but say "coo de grah".

I think it's a hypercorrection: people know it's a French phrase, correctly remember that French often doesn't pronounce final consonants, and then incorrectly assume that applies here.

#348 ::: Carrie S. ::: (view all by) ::: July 29, 2016, 08:13 AM:

The -p in coup is not pronounced (it is not one of C, F, L, R), so that part's right.

#349 ::: C. Wingate ::: (view all by) ::: July 29, 2016, 08:30 AM:

re 3344 et seq: I'm pretty sure they're imitating some cartoon character but I couldn't tell you whose catchphrase it is.

#350 ::: Em ::: (view all by) ::: July 31, 2016, 03:04 PM:

"But can we all take a minute and marinate on the fact that he looks like Ash?"

#351 ::: P J Evans ::: (view all by) ::: July 31, 2016, 10:19 PM:

"Eleanor was FDR’s eyes and ears in the country, she traveled endlessly, and she campaigned for human rights issues ignored by our society in those daze"

The days when the country was in a daze?

#352 ::: Pfusand ::: (view all by) ::: August 01, 2016, 09:08 AM:

Sadly, a classic mistake:

"Pence will be elevated by this, especially if he takes the "clean up the mess" roll."

#353 ::: Pendrift ::: (view all by) ::: August 01, 2016, 09:26 AM:

Craft (Alchemy) @347: I didn't realize how common an error this was. A quick search tells me it's used twice in Kill Bill, for instance. "Coo de grah" is the correct pronunciation of coup de gras; the error is in the "gras" part, which means grease or fat (as in foie gras, fat liver). The expression should be written coup de grâce and pronounced "coo de grass".

#354 ::: GAY! Xopher Halftongue QUEER! ::: (view all by) ::: August 01, 2016, 03:07 PM:

So if I whack someone with a bag of lard (my stomach, for example) that's a proper coup de gras?

#355 ::: P J Evans ::: (view all by) ::: August 01, 2016, 03:49 PM:

354
AAAAAAGGGGHHHHH!
(also, nice work!)

#356 ::: GAY! Xopher Halftongue QUEER! ::: (view all by) ::: August 01, 2016, 04:13 PM:

*bows*

#357 ::: Pfusand ::: (view all by) ::: August 01, 2016, 06:29 PM:

Really, I should stop reading the comments elsewhere:

"There are plenty of people in this country that believe in the occult of the Donald."

#358 ::: David Goldfarb ::: (view all by) ::: August 01, 2016, 10:12 PM:

In terms of French hypercorrection, I heard one quite often when I was a tournament chess player in California. There's a phrase "en prise" that means a piece is threatened with capture; just about everybody said "on pre" when it should be "on preez".

#359 ::: Em ::: (view all by) ::: August 02, 2016, 01:09 AM:

"You've never suck out medical advice?"

(That has to be a generalization from "sneak --> snuck", right?)

#360 ::: Craft (Alchemy) ::: (view all by) ::: August 02, 2016, 04:37 AM:

Pendrift @353: The weird thing is that I'd bet that most of the people I hear saying "coo de grah" have learned it by reading ("coup de grace" is a reasonably common term to find in RPG or wargaming sourcebooks; the language of LARP is heavily influenced by the language of tabletop), but have somehow got from the correct spelling to the wrong pronunciation. I think this is where the hypercorrection comes in.

Xopher @354: *applause*

David Goldfarb @358: That's really interesting. I wonder what other instances of this kind of error are out there?

#361 ::: Cassy B. ::: (view all by) ::: August 02, 2016, 10:48 AM:

I've just heard the phrase "early adapters" about six times from different people on one radio interview. The context is people who immediately run out to get the latest-and-greatest thing, not people who are particularly protean...

#362 ::: David Harmon ::: (view all by) ::: August 02, 2016, 11:42 AM:

Pfusand #357: Well, a lot of folks think he's the devil, but most don't mean it literally!

#363 ::: GAY! Xopher Halftongue QUEER! ::: (view all by) ::: August 02, 2016, 01:55 PM:

And lots of us would be in favor of his occultation.

#364 ::: dotless ı ::: (view all by) ::: August 04, 2016, 11:51 AM:

Craft (Alchemy)@360: I wonder what other instances of this kind of error are out there?

The word "verdigris" might count, in either or both of English and French. In English I've heard the final "s" dropped as if in French; and I believe French now uses "vert-de-gris", which does drop the final "s". But, if I'm reading the etymology correctly, the common origin of the two is "verte de Grece" ("green of Greece"), which would have a final consonant even in modern French, and the term came into English with a final consonant.

#365 ::: GAY! Xopher Halftongue QUEER! ::: (view all by) ::: August 05, 2016, 12:42 AM:

Someone on Twitter was saying wacky things, and repeatedly proclaiming "Just my onion."

I commented that he really needs to pay attention to the text his autocomplete produces.

#366 ::: Mary Aileen ::: (view all by) ::: August 05, 2016, 09:12 AM:

Xopher (365): I am amusingly reminded of my family's oft-repeated pronouncement "That's an opinion. Opinions are subject to controversy."

Wacky-twitter-dude's autocomplete would turn that into "Onions are subject to controversy." Why, yes. Yes they are.

#367 ::: GAY! Xopher Halftongue QUEER! ::: (view all by) ::: August 05, 2016, 09:11 PM:

*hopes someone here got his pun*

#368 ::: Mary Aileen ::: (view all by) ::: August 05, 2016, 09:42 PM:

Xopher (367): I do now. But not until you mentioned that there was one.

#369 ::: GAY! Xopher Halftongue QUEER! ::: (view all by) ::: August 06, 2016, 12:16 AM:

Mary Aileen 368: That'll do!

#370 ::: CHip ::: (view all by) ::: August 10, 2016, 11:45 AM:

Craft (Alchemy) @ various: do your gamers also refer to gods as "die-teez", or a magically-enforced onus as a "geese"? I've heard these are common in the US, but don't know directly as I haven't RPG'd for a long time; the closest I've come was providing some bureaucratic disentanglement for what may have been the first public LARP (Boskone, February 1982).

#371 ::: Tom Whitmore ::: (view all by) ::: August 10, 2016, 01:24 PM:

I think the SCA tourneys of the late 60s count as public LARPs, CHip (the Baycon Tourney was at least as public as something at Boskone); and possibly some of the Coventry games before that in LA.

#372 ::: Buddha Buck ::: (view all by) ::: August 10, 2016, 01:48 PM:

CHip @370: I've never heard "die-teez" (I assume that first syllable is pronounced like the verb related to death, and the last the same as "tease"), and I've only rarely heard "geese".

I've always pronounced the latter as "GEE-as", with a hard "g". It's only recently (since I basically stopped using the word) that I've learned it's supposed to be pronounced "gesh".

#373 ::: Cassy B. ::: (view all by) ::: August 10, 2016, 02:26 PM:

I say "DEE-a-tees" for "deities," and "GHEE-ahs" (hard g) for "geas". I know that the latter is wrong, but it's a habit I can't seem to break; it's one of those words I learned from a page rather than by ear.

#374 ::: Craft (Alchemy) ::: (view all by) ::: August 10, 2016, 02:36 PM:

Pronunciation of "deities": all the RPers I know use what I would consider the correct UK pronunciation, "DAY-e-tees".

Pronunciation of "geas": we say it two syllables, "GEE-us". I'd never come across the "gesh" pronunciation before this thread. Huh.

#375 ::: HelenS ::: (view all by) ::: August 10, 2016, 06:14 PM:

I saw someone on Facebook say today that Trump has an "IV League education." I wonder if that means he had to be nursed through it.

#376 ::: GAY! Xopher Halftongue QUEER! ::: (view all by) ::: August 10, 2016, 08:44 PM:

Well, geas is Gaelic, at least Irish and possibly others. In Irish it's pronounced /gyas/, that is, palatalized /g/, /a/ as in 'father' (or a little darker, halfway to /o/ as in 'ought'), s as in 'seven sensational Saracens'. The plural is geasa, pronounced /'gyas-ə/.

Back in D&D days, we said /'ji-əs/.

A geas, in Celtic mythology and story, is not a spell. It is a personal behavior restriction that comes from the Otherworld, and often amounts to a prophecy about what you'll do just before you die.

For example, Cu Chulainn had the geasa that he was not allowed to eat the flesh of a dog (because he was the Hound ('Cu') of Culann), and that he was not permitted to refuse hospitality. His enemies found these things out, and invited Cu Chulainn to join them for a meal of dog's flesh. I can't recall what he did, but he broke one of his geasa and therefore died shortly afterward.

I don't know how the word is pronounced in any other Gaelic, or for that matter in any Irish dialect other than the one I studied. And I think gamers should borrow it completely and say it however seems right to them, and not fuss about others' pronunciation.

#377 ::: Erik Nelson ::: (view all by) ::: August 10, 2016, 11:30 PM:

"The end is neigh."

(from one of those clickbait articles you get links to on Facebook)

The four horsemen of the apocalypse?

#378 ::: GAY! Xopher Halftongue QUEER! ::: (view all by) ::: August 11, 2016, 12:11 AM:

A friend sent me some job postings and suggested that some of them might be in my "wheel helm."

Nein, ich sagte, Wilhelm ist mein Bruder.

#379 ::: Bob Webber ::: (view all by) ::: August 11, 2016, 06:42 PM:

Xopher, good to know the big vote of confidence didn't turn your head.

#380 ::: GAY! Xopher Halftongue QUEER! ::: (view all by) ::: August 11, 2016, 08:52 PM:

It would have been rudder of me to say so than to remain quiet.

#381 ::: dotless ı ::: (view all by) ::: August 12, 2016, 02:46 PM:

Xopher@378: To be answered with a Wilhelm scream?

#382 ::: Jeremy Leader ::: (view all by) ::: August 14, 2016, 02:59 PM:

"every once and a while" caught my eye in a promotional booklet from a technical publishing company who are usually very meticulous in their editing.

#383 ::: Bob Webber ::: (view all by) ::: August 15, 2016, 02:16 PM:

I've been noticing a new oddity among some of the network reporters, pundits, and assorted talking heads: they use "milestone" where presumably they mean "hallmark."

As in, "Such crude epithets are the milestones of the Trump campaign."

#384 ::: cajunfj40 ::: (view all by) ::: August 15, 2016, 03:45 PM:

Bob Webber @#383: I've been noticing a new oddity among some of the network reporters, pundits, and assorted talking heads: they use "milestone" where presumably they mean "hallmark."

As in, "Such crude epithets are the milestones of the Trump campaign."

Maybe it's a different error, and they meant "millstone(s)"...

#385 ::: CHip ::: (view all by) ::: August 16, 2016, 11:13 AM:

Xopher @ 376: A geas, in Celtic mythology and story, is not a spell. It is a personal behavior restriction that comes from the Otherworld... So Golias "put[ting] a geas on everyone in this hall" in the middle of Silverlock is improper usage? I've never seen it restricted as you describe, but meanings expand the way my waistline did when I got careless.

#386 ::: GAY! Xopher Halftongue QUEER! ::: (view all by) ::: August 17, 2016, 01:36 AM:

I think so, CHip. At least by what I was taught.

#387 ::: Andrew M ::: (view all by) ::: August 17, 2016, 10:57 AM:

James Branch Cabell had people laying geasa on one another as early as the 1920's.

As for 'milestones', might it mean that the progress of the Trump campaign can be measured by its movement from one crude epithet to another?

#388 ::: Erik Nelson ::: (view all by) ::: August 17, 2016, 08:54 PM:

"Since leaving the White House in 2001, the Clintons have irradiated their debt and made millions of dollars through speaking engagements. "

from yet another Facebook clickbait article

#389 ::: Buddha Buck ::: (view all by) ::: August 18, 2016, 10:27 AM:

I guess that's one way to keep creditors away, with radioactive debt.

#390 ::: David Goldfarb ::: (view all by) ::: August 18, 2016, 11:48 AM:

A review on BoardGameGeek of the Battlestar Galactica board game says that "the Cylons widdle away at the resource dials". I think if I was on the human team in that situation, I'd be pissed.

#391 ::: Eimear Ní Mhéalóid ::: (view all by) ::: August 19, 2016, 05:38 AM:

The modern Irish singular is actually geis, according to the dictionary, and that would be pronounced more or less as "gesh". Details at
http://www.teanglann.ie/en/fgb/geis, including plenty of examples. Scottish Gaelic has geas, according to Scannell's Gàidhlig-Gaeilge dictionary.

#392 ::: estelendur ::: (view all by) ::: August 20, 2016, 10:59 PM:

Discussing why dragon-taming, despite being cool, perhaps does not make the most practical sense: "[Dragons are] darn right dangerous..." I think they meant "downright"?

#393 ::: Em ::: (view all by) ::: August 21, 2016, 02:02 PM:

From an article on the CBC: "unchartered waters".

#395 ::: GAY! Xopher Halftongue QUEER! ::: (view all by) ::: September 01, 2016, 12:27 AM:

On Twitter, accompanying saaaaad pictures, "I'm balling my eyes out."

I commented that that's usually a rather more pleasant process, but had it pointed out to me by several people that it's not if it's done with a melon baller. Discussions about Œdipus getting one as a wedding present ensued.

#396 ::: HelenS ::: (view all by) ::: September 05, 2016, 10:07 PM:

"I was blind sighted by it."

#397 ::: GAY! Xopher Halftongue QUEER! ::: (view all by) ::: September 18, 2016, 06:38 PM:

From the I-shit-you-not NEW YORK FUCKING TIMES:

Mr. Roche, who was also in a relationship, sat back and took it all in. “Everyone was aware that this gorgeous woman had entered the room,” he said. But soon he and Ms. O’Brien were cutting up backstage over missed queues and fumbled lines and whatever else captured their fancy.

Missed queues. They forgot to wait in line? The NYT relying on spell checkers instead of employing copyeditors as custom, decency and all gods demand is surely a sign of the End Times.

Here's the link. In case they try to deny it when on trial for their lives later, I've also saved a screenshot.

#398 ::: Jacque ::: (view all by) ::: September 18, 2016, 08:35 PM:

Not as egregious, and not the NYT, but:

(((Susan Crites))) ‏@neonnurse (via twitter) Just read a Denver Post article where someone says "We don't want to kick a gift horse in the mouth." Um...no, no, you don't. 0.o
#399 ::: CHip ::: (view all by) ::: September 20, 2016, 02:42 PM:

Xopher -- I'm not convinced that was a spell checker; as Teresa noted in her previous book, copy editors can also have off days (or off books...). However, I see that it still isn't fixed.

#400 ::: Carrie S. ::: (view all by) ::: October 02, 2016, 09:51 PM:

"I would like to do that, but since I have to deal with her in person at least once a week I reframed."

#401 ::: joann ::: (view all by) ::: October 03, 2016, 10:55 AM:

Heard on a Globetrekker: "were under empirical rule".

Evidence-based government--now there's a concept. Those wily Hapsburgs!

#402 ::: Lee ::: (view all by) ::: October 03, 2016, 06:49 PM:

joann, #401: Evidence-based government--now there's a concept.

No shit. It's one I wish we had.
*wondering if there's a T-shirt or bumper sticker to be got out of this*

#403 ::: Cadbury Moose ::: (view all by) ::: October 03, 2016, 07:13 PM:

This moose would happily settle for competent government, rather than the newspaper-driven shower of canine excreta currently in charge of the UK.

Gah!

#404 ::: SunflowerP ::: (view all by) ::: October 05, 2016, 04:40 AM:

Someone is posting a story on the pagan forum I help run. It has a 'prolong'.

Given that it's an attempt at surrealism that consists of poorly-spelled, poorly-punctuated walls-o'-text, this strikes me as a singularly apt eggcorn.

#405 ::: TomB ::: (view all by) ::: October 08, 2016, 01:55 AM:

"This pretty much summons it up."

#406 ::: Buddha Buck ::: (view all by) ::: October 08, 2016, 12:15 PM:

TomB @405: "Draw some symbols on the floor, light some candles, read some lation. This pretty much summons it up."

#407 ::: Carol Kimball ::: (view all by) ::: October 08, 2016, 02:20 PM:

On things to knit for winter comfort:
"a gator for the neck"

#408 ::: Mary Aileen ::: (view all by) ::: October 08, 2016, 02:50 PM:

Carol Kimball (407): Like these?

(That does seem to be a common error; when I googled for alligator neck warmer, most of the results were for gaiters with the 'gator' spelling. Using scarf instead of neck warmer brought up what I wanted.)

#409 ::: Queer Xopher Halftongue ::: (view all by) ::: October 17, 2016, 07:17 PM:

I have to confess one I did myself. I wrote that we try to "insure that every child has a holiday gift." Fortunately I corrected it.

You can't actually buy "holiday gift guarantee" policies as far as I know.

My stoning will take place tomorrow at noon outside the city gates. All are welcome to observe; active participants should be without sin.

#410 ::: Carol Kimball ::: (view all by) ::: October 18, 2016, 08:22 PM:

re: dyeing in a big pot and gradually adding more tint "to get an hombre effect".

#411 ::: TomB ::: (view all by) ::: October 19, 2016, 12:22 AM:

You can't actually buy "holiday gift guarantee" policies as far as I know.

That's brilliant!

#412 ::: Em ::: (view all by) ::: October 19, 2016, 12:01 PM:

Someone in a blog comment was worried that Muslim immigrants might try to impose Sahara Law.

#413 ::: Queer Xopher Halftongue ::: (view all by) ::: October 19, 2016, 01:28 PM:

Em, that's great. I've also seen "Shania Law."

#414 ::: Michael I ::: (view all by) ::: October 19, 2016, 02:43 PM:

Xopher@413

"Snania Law"

All radio stations must play at least one Shania Twain song each hour?

#415 ::: Buddha Buck ::: (view all by) ::: October 19, 2016, 04:17 PM:

Xopher@413, Michael@414:

I was thinking of the new album by Sharia Twain.

#416 ::: Carrie S. ::: (view all by) ::: October 19, 2016, 05:03 PM:

I've seen "Muslin extremists" a few times lately.

Gotta watch out for that unbleached cotton...

#417 ::: Tatterbots ::: (view all by) ::: October 19, 2016, 05:06 PM:

To invoke Article 50 without involving Parliament, the Government needs "the Royal Pejorative".

#418 ::: Queer Xopher Halftongue ::: (view all by) ::: October 19, 2016, 11:35 PM:

Michael 414: All radio stations must play at least one Shania Twain song each hour?

Raise your hand if you just flashed on Shania singing the Call to Prayer. *raises hand*

#419 ::: Carrie S. ::: (view all by) ::: November 04, 2016, 01:12 PM:

You know, I get that homophones are a thing, and it's especially tricky when going across languages. I try to cut people slack.

However, I feel that I must draw the line at referring to Adolf Hitler as "the Füror".

It's the fact that they umlauted the U but couldn't be arsed to take the 10 seconds (assuming they didn't already have a Google tab open) necessary to google the word that really gets to me.

#420 ::: Teresa Nielsen Hayden ::: (view all by) ::: November 08, 2016, 09:24 PM:

Note to self: add "buco bucks", courtesy of Janice Gelb.

#421 ::: Tom Whitmore ::: (view all by) ::: November 08, 2016, 09:49 PM:

(good to see you posting, t!)

#422 ::: Lila ::: (view all by) ::: November 08, 2016, 10:10 PM:

Teresa! Welcome back to feeling well enough to post!

#423 ::: P J Evans ::: (view all by) ::: December 09, 2016, 02:35 PM:

seen elseweb:
once and awhile

#424 ::: Race Traitor Xopher ::: (view all by) ::: December 19, 2016, 01:40 AM:

Amazon review of Burn, Witch, Burn: "This movie should burn at the steak."

#425 ::: Bruce H. ::: (view all by) ::: December 19, 2016, 04:49 PM:

This question may belong in the open thread, but I'll ask it here for the context. Are there other English word pairs with the brake/break, stake/steak pattern?

Brake/brake in particular seems to trip a lot of people.

#426 ::: Mary Aileen ::: (view all by) ::: December 19, 2016, 04:55 PM:

Bruce H. (425): Different final consonent, but there's great/grate.

#427 ::: Pendrift ::: (view all by) ::: December 19, 2016, 05:06 PM:

Bruce H. @425, for a similar mechanism with (near-)homophones, I'd say affect/effect, but unlike the other pairs, a lot of people don't have a clear grasp of the difference. Bear/bare as well.

#428 ::: TomB ::: (view all by) ::: December 19, 2016, 11:52 PM:

Lose/Loose seems to be the worst. I think it's because if you look at "lose" on the page, it looks wrong. You would expect it to be pronounced more like "Lowe's" instead of "Lew's". If only folks misspelled it "loos"; it would be a close match phonetically, and the English already look at us funny for so many other things, what's one more?

#429 ::: Clifton ::: (view all by) ::: December 20, 2016, 01:20 AM:

Bruce H. @ 425: I'm having trouble thinking of any other words where "eak" is pronounced like "ake". Are there others? There's "sheik" but I don't think I see that getting mixed up with "shake".

For a slightly different vowel pair, I believe I do see leek/leak confused from time to time. There's also reek/wreak, but I've never seen them confused; maybe anybody who knows how to use "wreak" in a sentence is likely to be past spelling problems.

#430 ::: duckbunny ::: (view all by) ::: December 20, 2016, 09:32 AM:

From an accident report, I offer the news that a minor cut was "oozying".

#431 ::: P J Evans ::: (view all by) ::: December 20, 2016, 10:16 AM:

429
I've seen "reek" and "wreak" confused. I don't know if it's someone who doesn't know the difference, or if it's automiscorrect.

#432 ::: Xopher Halftongue ::: (view all by) ::: December 20, 2016, 01:17 PM:

I found "burned at the steak" particularly amusing because the writer was trying for a pun.

#433 ::: dotless ı ::: (view all by) ::: December 20, 2016, 01:53 PM:

Bruce H.@425: I don't know if it's the full set of words, but my memory is that only a handful of words with "ea" came out of the Great Vowel Shift with that sound: "great", "steak", "break", "yea", "swear", and "bear" are commonly mentioned.

#434 ::: David Goldfarb ::: (view all by) ::: December 20, 2016, 02:06 PM:

So then "bare/bear" would fit the pattern, despite ending in R instead of K.

#435 ::: Cassy B. ::: (view all by) ::: December 20, 2016, 04:13 PM:

So would "pear/pair/pare" I suppose. And "wear/ware".

Although that might depend on dialect; certainly they all sound the same in my dialect, but then, so does "merry/Mary/marry". But pen and pin sound completely different...

#436 ::: Del Cotter ::: (view all by) ::: December 20, 2016, 05:41 PM:

tear/tare

#437 ::: Lee ::: (view all by) ::: December 20, 2016, 05:42 PM:

I've seen the phrase "reek havoc", and always took it to be an inverse gazebo error -- not knowing how the word is spelled because you've only heard it pronounced.

#438 ::: dcb ::: (view all by) ::: December 20, 2016, 05:42 PM:

"Pear/pair/pare" all sound the same in my dialect as well, as do "wear/ware" (and "where").
But "merry/Mary/marry" are definitely three different sounds to me, and pen and pin sound completely different as well...

#439 ::: Singing Wren ::: (view all by) ::: December 20, 2016, 06:25 PM:

For further reference, I hear pear and wear rhyming with each other, and pair/pare sounding the same and rhyming with pare.

I also hear merry/Mary/marry as two sounds - merry and Mary/marry.

Given that I have relatives who were raised with the same dialect that don't make the same distinction, I wonder how much can be attributed to choral training?

Also, pin and pen are completely different sounds to me, but growing up I had classmates for whom they were the same.

#440 ::: Cassy B. ::: (view all by) ::: December 20, 2016, 07:01 PM:

"Where" doesn't QUITE sound like "ware" or "wear"; it's slightly breathier. So is "which" as opposed to "witch". Oddly, I make no distinction between "when" and "wen".

#441 ::: Race Traitor Xopher ::: (view all by) ::: December 20, 2016, 07:24 PM:

Del 436: Indeed, tier/tear/tare, the ends being distinct and homophonic with the two words in the center homograph.

#442 ::: TomB ::: (view all by) ::: January 16, 2017, 01:13 AM:

In an obituary for the great historian and California State Librarian, Kevin Starr: "Dr. Starr attended St. Ignacious High School"

#443 ::: dcb ::: (view all by) ::: January 16, 2017, 04:41 AM:

I think it's time for an airing of this poem:

The Chaos - by the Dutch writer G. Nolst Trenité, written in 1922.

Also know as English Pronunciation

Definitely British English pronunciation, and for a native speaker hard to read aloud due to fits of laughter!

#444 ::: Mary Aileen ::: (view all by) ::: January 16, 2017, 06:47 PM:

This afternoon my coworker was looking at a website that also collected these. (I think they were real, not made up on the spot.) The two that stuck in my mind:

someone who spoke porch and geese

playing rush and roulette

That first one took me a minute to parse correctly.

#445 ::: Anne Sheller ::: (view all by) ::: January 17, 2017, 02:20 AM:

dcb @ 443 - Much of it works in American English too, but there are occasional "say what?" points.

#446 ::: Cassy B. ::: (view all by) ::: January 17, 2017, 11:03 AM:

@443, mostly it works for me, but there are a few failures in my dialect. For example, "branch" rhymes perfectly with "ranch" to me. (Same "a" as in "and"). If there's another way to pronounce either word, I don't know it. And I never knew "Pall Mall" was pronounced differently than "pall mall" (pawl mawl). Probably because I've never heard it spoken. How IS "Pall Mall" pronounced...?)

#447 ::: P J Evans ::: (view all by) ::: January 17, 2017, 12:06 PM:

446
I was taught that it's pronounced "Pell Mell" - it's an old game resembling croquet, and the place in London with the name was where it was played at the time.

#448 ::: Cassy B. ::: (view all by) ::: January 17, 2017, 01:51 PM:

PJ Evans, ok, now, that's fascinating. I've heard of doing things "pell-mell" (rapidly and recklessly) but had no idea that it came from a game called "pall mall" nor that "Pall Mall" was a gaming ground where it was played. (I'm assuming the etymology, here, but it seems logical.)

#449 ::: Del Cotter ::: (view all by) ::: January 17, 2017, 06:19 PM:

It's from the Italian palla e maglio, "pale (or stake) and mallet", in other words the game that evolved into croquet. The hoops are now a convenient way of putting the spikes in the ground at the regulation separation, but originally they were two separate spikes you had to measure carefully. You used the same mallet to knock them in as to play the balls with. When you hit the balls with the mallet, they rolled "pell-mell" across the grass.

#450 ::: Del Cotter ::: (view all by) ::: January 17, 2017, 06:19 PM:

It's from the Italian palla e maglio, "pale (or stake) and mallet", in other words the game that evolved into croquet. The hoops are now a convenient way of putting the spikes in the ground at the regulation separation, but originally they were two separate spikes you had to measure carefully. You used the same mallet to knock them in as to play the balls with. When you hit the balls with the mallet, they rolled "pell-mell" across the grass.

#451 ::: Del Cotter ::: (view all by) ::: January 17, 2017, 06:21 PM:

...but I repeat myself.

#452 ::: dcb ::: (view all by) ::: January 18, 2017, 05:58 AM:

"Pall Mall" - the road in London - is pronounced with a short 'a' as in "and" (and as in "pal" meaning friend) in both words: listen at https://en.oxforddictionaries.com/definition/pall-mall

'pall' as in the sheet over a coffin, or a dark cloud of smoke, or even the verb (the quiet life began to pall" is pronounced more like 'pawl' or "Paul" (https://en.oxforddictionaries.com/definition/pall).

The distinctions in three versions of "mall" I wouldn't have thought about, but I can hear the difference in the examples provided at the bottom of the page https://en.oxforddictionaries.com/definition/mall

However, "branch" and "ranch" rhyme for me as well (and on that website).

#453 ::: dcb ::: (view all by) ::: January 18, 2017, 08:08 AM:

From a list of causes of intermittent groin pain:

- Cute appendicitis

I assume it started as "Acute appendicitis" but I'm not sure how it lost the initial 'A' - probably from poor copy editing.

#454 ::: Elliott Mason ::: (view all by) ::: January 18, 2017, 12:34 PM:

dcb @452: it amuses me when international travelers refer to the strip of green space and monuments in DC to rhyme with pal.

My husband (English father) does it on purpose and as a disambiguation technique from shopping plazas, because that sort of mess disturbs him. And also because it's funny. :->

#455 ::: Race Traitor Xopher ::: (view all by) ::: January 18, 2017, 06:12 PM:

I always thought Pall Mall was where you went to shop for coffins and stuff...

#456 ::: Tom Whitmore ::: (view all by) ::: January 18, 2017, 07:19 PM:

Only if you've been smoking them.

#457 ::: KeithS ::: (view all by) ::: January 24, 2017, 01:38 PM:

"New seats with Lumber support".

Quote from a visitor's review of a movie theater, not a lumberyard. And, no, that theater doesn't show films about hard wood.

#458 ::: Serge Broom ::: (view all by) ::: January 24, 2017, 03:06 PM:

KeithS... Not a movie spiritually inspired by Ed Wood movie and starring James Wood and Joan Woodward, based on designs by Carl Barks?

#459 ::: Race Traitor Xopher ::: (view all by) ::: January 24, 2017, 04:28 PM:

"Lumber support" sounds like gay porn to me.

#460 ::: joann ::: (view all by) ::: January 25, 2017, 10:34 AM:

I'd swear that lumber support would describe the average church pew ...

#461 ::: Cadbury Moose ::: (view all by) ::: January 25, 2017, 01:25 PM:

Pit props and shuttering?

Cartel (TINLC) member #1317 as far as this moose can remember.

#462 ::: dcb ::: (view all by) ::: January 28, 2017, 01:01 PM:

Courtesy of a local paper: "chronic obstruction of her airwaves."

#463 ::: Lee ::: (view all by) ::: January 28, 2017, 01:23 PM:

dcb, #462: I can't even begin to figure out what that was supposed to have been.

#464 ::: P J Evans ::: (view all by) ::: January 28, 2017, 01:55 PM:

462/463
I think they meant "airways".

#465 ::: Bruce H. ::: (view all by) ::: January 28, 2017, 04:26 PM:

dcb @462: I saw the same substitution in a newspaper classified ad many years ago. On a milling machine, the work table moves back and forth and left and right on ways. On high end machines, the ways are chromed to reduce wear and keep the movements accurate. This ad offered a machine with "chrome waves". The one thing the ways are not, is wavy; they are made as straight as humanly achievable. I had to read the ad out loud to figure out what it was trying to say.

#466 ::: Cadbury Moose ::: (view all by) ::: January 29, 2017, 03:26 PM:

On the Edinburgh tram project:

The chamber was subsequently used in the second world war as an air raid shelter and there are still artefacts from that time, such as signage, which are still well persevered.

#467 ::: dcb ::: (view all by) ::: January 29, 2017, 05:01 PM:

Lee @463: Definitely supposed to be 'airways' as P J Evans says @464.

#468 ::: Em ::: (view all by) ::: February 01, 2017, 11:34 AM:

In response to one of those "X profession should stay out of politics" comments:

"It honestly begs to differ which people are 'allowed' to be in politics anymore doesn't it?"

#469 ::: Race Traitor Xopher ::: (view all by) ::: February 11, 2017, 02:24 PM:

"Express service is cancelled on 53 Steeles East route due to incremental weather."

It just kept getting worse, little by little.

#470 ::: Race Traitor Xopher ::: (view all by) ::: February 11, 2017, 02:26 PM:

(Colin Hinz posted that on FB. A couple of commenters beat me to the remark.)

#471 ::: Lee ::: (view all by) ::: February 16, 2017, 12:32 PM:

Just spotted on the wilds of Facebook: "aiding and a bedding criminals".

#472 ::: HelenS ::: (view all by) ::: February 19, 2017, 04:24 PM:

Offered on my local Buy Nothing group: "Neckless. Brand new." It took me a minute of staring at the picture (which included a couple of other objects) to realize they were giving away a necklace.

#473 ::: Race Traitor Xopher ::: (view all by) ::: February 19, 2017, 05:32 PM:

"Neckless. Brand New" makes me think of a guy you haven't seen for a year, who started doing steroids 11 months ago.

#474 ::: Carol Kimball ::: (view all by) ::: February 20, 2017, 02:13 AM:

Chiropractor may have exasperated my problem

#475 ::: SunflowerP ::: (view all by) ::: February 25, 2017, 04:39 AM:

So the pagan forum I help run has lately picked up a member who apparently cannot communicate in anything other than dreadful phrases. When someone finally asked him whether English was his first language, he came out with this gem: 'This is absolutive my native tongue.'

#476 ::: P J Evans ::: (view all by) ::: February 26, 2017, 05:08 PM:

your round of the mill

well, I guess if you run around the mill....

#477 ::: TomB ::: (view all by) ::: February 26, 2017, 08:54 PM:

Manager is quoted as "This is a nice little feather in his camp." Mistranscription or figure of speech? It's baseball, so hard to tell.

#478 ::: Carrie S. ::: (view all by) ::: February 27, 2017, 07:51 AM:

'This is absolutive my native tongue.'

Well, that can't be right, since English is nom/acc.

...I'll see myself out.

#479 ::: Rainflame ::: (view all by) ::: February 27, 2017, 10:43 PM:

headline quote in the local newspaper: "recipe for ranker"
the quote in the article correctly said "rancor"

#480 ::: dcb ::: (view all by) ::: February 28, 2017, 08:41 AM:

And on a running site, discussing wet weather and the state of the trails: "I found ducks swimming on my favourite bridal path recently."

- I'm choosing to believe that's an auto-miscorrect!

#481 ::: Fragano Ledgister ::: (view all by) ::: March 03, 2017, 06:35 PM:

dcb #480: The confusion there (involving a groom as it does), means that someone is being taken for a ride.

#482 ::: Fragano Ledgister ::: (view all by) ::: March 03, 2017, 06:36 PM:

dcb #480: The confusion there (involving a groom as it does), means that someone is being taken for a ride.

#483 ::: HelenS ::: (view all by) ::: March 03, 2017, 07:12 PM:

Within spitting difference of. I think this comes from an association with "splitting the difference"?

#484 ::: Rainflame ::: (view all by) ::: March 04, 2017, 10:41 PM:

They probably mean within spitting distance of - no farther away than you can spit

#485 ::: dcb ::: (view all by) ::: March 05, 2017, 01:10 PM:

Fragano Ledgister @481: :-)

#486 ::: Race Traitor Xopher ::: (view all by) ::: March 17, 2017, 04:03 PM:

A subtle one from this article, which is interesting for other reasons:

An Oklahoma state senator charged with child prostitution turned himself into authorities Thursday, a week after police found him a motel room with a 17-year-old boy.
While I'm sure he would like to have turned himself into authorities (PAF! "I drop the charges against myself, and deny your appeal!") what he really did was turn himself in to authorities.

#487 ::: OtterB ::: (view all by) ::: March 17, 2017, 04:20 PM:

Xopher @486 I missed the one you spotted on my first pass through. What I saw (and I checked, and it's in the original, not a transcription error on your part) is a week after police found him a motel room with a 17-year-old boy

in a motel room, surely?

#488 ::: Race Traitor Xopher ::: (view all by) ::: March 17, 2017, 04:29 PM:

LOL I hadn't noticed that one! Hmm...given the likelihood that this was a setup, maybe they DID find him a motel room...

#489 ::: Race Traitor Xopher ::: (view all by) ::: March 19, 2017, 03:06 PM:

From someone's list of World's Dumbest Tweets:

Why y'all acting like the world just now gettin messed up? What about slavery? The hall of cost? Pick up a book
I think the "Hall of Cost" must be the mall corridor with the expensive stores...

#490 ::: Race Traitor Xopher ::: (view all by) ::: March 19, 2017, 03:12 PM:

Also, "hollow cost" in the same list. Jesusmaria.

#491 ::: Fragano Ledgister ::: (view all by) ::: March 20, 2017, 05:39 PM:

Xopher #489: The "Hall of Cost" is where the spirits of the dead are valued.

#492 ::: Lee ::: (view all by) ::: March 20, 2017, 06:36 PM:

Fragano, #491: Presided over by Anubis, I take it?

#493 ::: Tom Whitmore ::: (view all by) ::: March 20, 2017, 07:59 PM:

No, Anubis' brother Bill (that Gates family, it's everywhere).

#494 ::: Sandy B. ::: (view all by) ::: March 27, 2017, 01:31 PM:

I wish this was intentional because it's absolutely magnificent (from the Energy Gang podcast): "The headwinds for coal are strong and they're coming from every direction."

#495 ::: Jacque ::: (view all by) ::: March 27, 2017, 01:45 PM:

From There Is No Military Option Against North Korea:

Either this administration has to accept that and talk to Kim Jong-un, or continue down a tic-for-tac road where Pyongyang responds to instigation with a missile test that further destabilizes the region—or puts our allies in the region at risk.

Which branch of game theory involves trading tiny candies on a cross-hatch playing board, again?

~oOo~

(And have I mentioned recently how nuts it makes me when people "hone in" on something?)

#496 ::: Race Traitor Xopher ::: (view all by) ::: April 10, 2017, 11:34 PM:

"European born, American Bread."

Can I smother him with white dough? Please?

#497 ::: Carol Kimball ::: (view all by) ::: April 15, 2017, 07:32 PM:

“It’s a stick with which you wack people. Or other things. At your digression.”

#498 ::: Race Traitor Xopher ::: (view all by) ::: April 16, 2017, 04:13 PM:

Seen in the wild: "...back in the midsts of time."

My teeth hurt.

#499 ::: Dave Harmon ::: (view all by) ::: April 16, 2017, 08:22 PM:

Xopher #496: Just throw a loaf of Wonder Bread at them, probably wouldn't even count as assault.

#500 ::: Carrie S. ::: (view all by) ::: April 16, 2017, 08:36 PM:

Carol, are you on LSG?

#501 ::: Race Traitor Xopher ::: (view all by) ::: April 16, 2017, 09:25 PM:

No, Dave. But if I threw the raw dough at them, it might be battery.

#502 ::: Cadbury Moose ::: (view all by) ::: April 17, 2017, 08:22 AM:

Add some seasoning and it'd be a salt and battery.

g,d&rvvvf

#503 ::: Cadbury Moose ::: (view all by) ::: April 17, 2017, 08:31 AM:

Jacque @ #495

There's that now obsolete tool for sharpening certain kinds of fish: the carp hone. (We still have carphone warehouses in England, but I don't think they actually keep them in stock.)

#504 ::: D. Potter ::: (view all by) ::: April 17, 2017, 11:44 AM:

Would the warehouses be the repositories of mass carp hone? Sounds cheesy to me...

#505 ::: dotless ı ::: (view all by) ::: April 17, 2017, 12:01 PM:

Cadbury Moose@503: There's that now obsolete tool for sharpening certain kinds of fish: the carp hone. (We still have carphone warehouses in England, but I don't think they actually keep them in stock.

Better to keep them in stock if you want the stock to get all the flavor.

#506 ::: Carol Kimball ::: (view all by) ::: April 21, 2017, 07:15 PM:

Carrie S. @ 500

Yup.

#507 ::: Carol Kimball ::: (view all by) ::: April 27, 2017, 11:37 AM:

A guy wakes up to find himself covered in bedbug bites:
I come to find out that three units in my building are aware that the woman directly above me has her apt invested.

#508 ::: Erik Nelson ::: (view all by) ::: May 08, 2017, 09:48 PM:

Unchartered waters

#509 ::: Race Traitor Xopher ::: (view all by) ::: May 10, 2017, 07:57 PM:

"The dye is cast."

Poor kid; I didn't have the heart to correct him. He was tweeting about Trump-Russia with great sincerity. I mean, Holi smokes, how mean can you be?

#510 ::: Jim Parish ::: (view all by) ::: May 10, 2017, 10:58 PM:

I can think of situations - even involving Trump-Russia - in which "the dye is cast" would be perfectly correct. Such situations would probably end in arrests, though.

#511 ::: Race Traitor Xopher ::: (view all by) ::: May 11, 2017, 11:48 AM:

You know what Holi is, Jim?

#512 ::: Jim Parish ::: (view all by) ::: May 11, 2017, 12:07 PM:

Obviously, I didn't; but I do now.

I stand by my previous comment, however.

#513 ::: Clifton ::: (view all by) ::: May 11, 2017, 12:34 PM:

Reported previously, but just saw it again: "He thinks he's getting away with impeding the investigation but he's got another thing coming."

#514 ::: Rainflame ::: (view all by) ::: May 14, 2017, 10:43 PM:

This may turn out to be a blessing in the skies.

#515 ::: Race Traitor Xopher ::: (view all by) ::: May 15, 2017, 06:22 PM:

"A test of his own medicine."

#516 ::: P J Evans ::: (view all by) ::: May 19, 2017, 10:42 AM:

the stock and trade
[/sigh]

#517 ::: Cadbury Moose ::: (view all by) ::: May 19, 2017, 01:19 PM:

This moose has seen 'the stocking trade' somewhere.

#518 ::: Mary Aileen ::: (view all by) ::: May 19, 2017, 03:22 PM:

Cadbury Moose (517): I've seen stores that only sell socks; surely they're in the stocking trade? ;)

#519 ::: Erik Nelson ::: (view all by) ::: May 22, 2017, 10:18 PM:

So the idea of brushing my teeth with dirt didn’t phase me at all.

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