A few videos ago I talked about common mistakes I see in English writing.
Here is one of them:
Here is a second one:
The thing is, some people see these videos and say “I could care less about my writing, as long as people get what I mean.”
Let’s stop right there.
You could care less?
Don’t you mean “I couldn’t care less?”
Because if you could care less, it means that you do care…at least a little bit. Because that’s the only way it would be possible for you to care less.
Clearly, this is another issue we need to discuss…so before we get into today’s writing mistakes, we’re going to talk about a few words and phrases that people often say incorrectly.
But first…an embarrassing story from my own life. It’s about a word I had read in books but not actually said out loud…until I was trying to impress a guy. It’s a French word that means “disturbing and horrifying because of involvement with or depiction of death and injury.” That’ all I’m going to type about it here…going to leave that gem for you to watch in the video.
Next commonly misspoken item on our list:
Regardless vs. Irregardless
“Regardless” means “regard less,” “without regard,” or “despite something.”
I’ve often heard people say “irregardless” when they mean to say “regardless.”
According to some sources, “irregardless” comes from a combination of the words “regardless” and “irrespective” and another reason why people might say “irregardless” is that they’re following the pattern of words such as “irregular” and “irreplaceable.”
That said, is “irregardless” actually a word?
Well, the dictionary calls it a “nonstandard synonym.” According to Dictionary.com, “its nonstandard status is due to the double negative construction of the prefix ir- with the suffix -less.”
Now for the one that annoys me immensely:
Good vs. Well
How are you?
This is kinda a big topic, and many argue that you must answer “I’m doing well.” Why? because good is an adjective and well is an adverb.
Since ‘doing’ is our verb, we need an adverb to modify the verb, i.e. well….so you’d say “I’m doing well.”
Then again, when I hear “do good” I think of “doing good for others”–doing good deeds, etc. I say “I’m good” when someone offers me something that I don’t want or need — like “hey, do you want more potatoes?”
“Nah, I’m good.” So in this case it means “I’m full/ I pass.”
Another time I hear someone is “doing well” is in reference to financial or academic success…”she’s doing really well with that investment,” etc.
Self-isolation vs. Self-quarantine
Because of the current pandemic situation, I’ve heard this one more and more. Let’s talk about the difference between “self-isolation” and “self-quarantine.”
Self-isolation: for sick people, they have a contagious disease and self-isolate from people who are not sick.
Self-quarantine: for people who aren’t sick but may be sick…they don’t have symptoms and may not get the disease, but they separate from others just in case.
Now that we have those out of the way, let’s address some more writing mistakes:
Moot point vs. Mute point
Moot point: a fact that doesn’t matter because it’s not relevant to the current situation.
Mute: no sound…I don’t know what a “mute point” would look like. It definitely would not sound like anything.
Confident vs. Confidant
Most people know what confident means. I’m pretty confident that I don’t need to talk about it here.
A confidant or confidante is someone with whom you can discuss private matters. The words confidant and confidante are interchangeable, but some people use “confidante” for a female confidant. That usage has largely fallen out of favor, because it’s kind of like writing “authoress” to refer to a female author.
Premier vs. Premiere
Premier means the first, foremost, or oldest; or it can also refer to a prime minister.
Premiere means the first showing of a movie, TV show, or a theatrical production. I use Adobe Premiere to edit my videos, so this one is pretty easy to remember.
Stationary vs. Stationery
Stationary is an adjective that describes objects that are not moving. In the video we talk about the oxymoron “stationary bike.”
Stationery, however, refers to paper, matching envelopes, and writing implements.
Elicit vs. Illicit
First off, elicit is a verb, whereas illicit is an adjective
Elicit means “to bring forth a reaction or response.”
Illicit means “forbidden by law, rules, or custom.”
That’s it for today:) if you already knew all of these, congrats!
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