Here is my admittedly incomplete list of popular offenses against the English language. Please join me in a moment of silence in honor of the part of the language that has died today (sigh).
Starting sentences with “So…”.
“Very fraught”
“very unique”
“are key” for “are very crucially important”
“equally as” for “equally”
“these ones” for “these”
“He was looking for a high quality of beer” for “He was looking for a high quality beer,” where what he is looking for is a beer of a certain kind, rather than a quality of a certain kind.
“wanna go and get some beers?” as opposed to “wanna go and get some beer?”
“he was too good of a fellow” in which the “of” is superfluous.
“Begs the question” (for “raises the ..”)
“graphic” for “explicit” or “disturbing”
“Impact” as verb
“Access” as verb
“critique” as verb
tone of voice suggesting a sequence of examples where there is only one
“necessarily” thrown in as an emphasizer
“and whatnot” in place of “and so on” or “etc”
“garnished” for “garnisheed”
“mum” or “mom” and “dad” in place of mother and father
“scary” in place of frightening
“I”/”me” confusions
“infer”/”imply” confusions
“went” in place of “said”
“he was like” followed some verbal expression
“My name is Trooper Jones” for “I am Trooper Jones”
“I’m not sure” for “I don’t know”
“us” or “we” instead of “I” or “me”
“could care less” for “couldn’t care less”
“even” as in “don’t even get me started” — What does “even” do here? This usage presumes a tacit minimum that has not been reached in order to make sense, but it is frequently used as an emphasizer where no such minimum exists
“literally” as an emphasizer when it is not being contrasted with “figuratively” (“it was literally three inches long”)
“nauseous”/”nauseating” confusion
“irregardless of”

4 Responses to Solecisms

  1. Anne says:

    My own personal favorites:

    whether or not


    causes for why

  2. Anne says:

    A close contender:

    the reason why…

  3. Anne says:

    And, of course, the ever popular,

    “He graduated high school/college/etc.”

  4. I like all of your contributions, but my own deepest hatred is reserved for “that begs the question” (intended as “that raises the question”. When a person “begs the question” the very thing that they are NOT doing, that they are in fact AVOIDING doing, is … Raising the damn question!

    How ya doin?

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