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KenECoyote

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Recently I've been hearing more and more usage of "literally" incorrectly...

I heard a Dr. Phil podcast where he said himself "literally left no stone unturned" (in the forest no less). o_O
I've also heard "I literally lost my mind!" :headspinning:
 

Bat-mite

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I don't give a "rat's a**". Who would want one?
A rat's hindquarters are not only something of no value, but are also something you would want to give away as soon as possible! Stinky, dirty, ugly, etc. So this bit of hyperbole, "I don't give a rat's @$$," is meant to say, I care so little about what you are saying that I wouldn't even give a rat's hiney to be able to listen to it.
 

Bat-mite

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Recently I've been hearing more and more usage of "literally" incorrectly...

I heard a Dr. Phil podcast where he said himself "literally left no stone unturned" (in the forest no less). o_O
I've also heard "I literally lost my mind!" :headspinning:
The pronunciation seems to have changed, too. I am familiar with it being a four-syllable word: lit-er-al-ly. But I always here people say it as a three-syllable word now: lit-ral-ly.

And yes, it has become used as more of a hyperbolic than with its true definition. I literally exploded when I read that.
 

Bat-mite

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As far as “I could care less” either is correct. “I couldn’t care less” is literal. “I could care less” is sarcasm. Bot are better than “Can’t hardly” in reference to anything. 😁
IIRC, there used to be two expressions: "I couldn't care less" (the literal), "Like I could care less" (the simile). But now they have merged into one: "I could care less" (which means you actually couldn't care less).
 

Bat-mite

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When I was a kid, gas cans were labeled "inflammable," meaning the substance can be inflamed. The opposite was "non-inflammable." But I guess people of slightly lower IQ thought the "im-" prefix meant "not" (like in "impossible" or "impractical"). And now it has become "flammable."

And some words become their own antonym somehow. Originally, a moot point was one worthy of discussion. Now it means "not worthy of discussion." You can get around that whole thing by saying "mute point," which send me up the wall (see earlier reference to that saying).
 

Bat-mite

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Other words/phrases besides "moot point" that people get all mixed up:
  • Bald-faced lie (correct) -- bold-faced lie (incorrect)
  • Supposedly (correct) -- supposeably (incorrect)
  • For all intents and purposes (correct) -- For all intensive purposes (incorrect)
 

jqavins

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A usually trusted source once told young me that the term is "for all intensent [or 'intensant'?] purposes", but I never could figure out what that adjective "intensent" meant.

Since we've moved into more general English language annoyance:
  • I too am greatly disturbed by the figurative use of "literal", as are many other people.
  • "Exponential" does not mean "very large".
  • "Anyways" makes one sound ignorant.
  • Back in the mid-late '90s I worked with someone who frequently prefaced his assertions (spoken) with "prolly" and it took me over a week to figure out what the heck he was talking about. I never encountered that one from anybody again until rather recently.
  • To "beg the question" is... Oh, never mind.
 

Cape Byron

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Blue Moon:

"We called it a Blue Moon because it was the second of two full moons in a calendar month. Now another sort of Blue Moon is coming up. It’s a seasonal Blue Moon, the third of four full moons in a season (the time between a solstice and an equinox). The upcoming Blue Moon will crest on August 21-22, 2021. And, by lucky coincidence, the moon will be near planets again, this time Jupiter and Saturn."

 

Lee

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The meaning, I think, is the same. The only difference is that in English that usage died out if it was ever adopted, and in French it has hung on, at least to some extent. I'm still quite sure that's (at least in part?) the root of it. (Another possible part would be a covered lamp, and one "opens" the cover to shed light into the room. But I just made that up.)

Oh, no, my friend, I'm afraid you've got that one bass ackwards. "I couldn't care less" means I care so little that there is no possibility of caring less, i.e. I don't care at all. "I could care less" would mean that there is room for less caring, i.e. I do care at least a little. I hear people saying "I could care less" and that's another one that really bugs me.
No wonder I did poorly in English 101
 

teepot

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Interesting thread. I often wonder where and why about sayings. Who was the first person to say it.
Holy Mackerel and Holy smoke?
Straight from the horses mouth?
Drat?
Dag nabit?
Darn Tootin?
Two left feet?
You scratch my back and I'll scratch yours?
Tipsyy?
Buzzed?
This could go on for a while.
 

OverTheTop

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Somewhat along the line of broken sayings, I've always fascinated by the usage: "The alarm went off."
In Oz we can have something "chuck a Birko". It usually means going crazy and wild, very quickly from being quiet. Birko was a brand of like a kettle that if let boil dry would usually go bang in a big way.

A usually trusted source once told young me that the term is "for all intensent [or 'intensant'?] purposes", but I never could figure out what that adjective "intensent" meant.
Sorry if I missed it upthread, but it is "for all intents and purposes".
 

prfesser

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Here's one that probably falls under the description of "regional colloquialism". My mother, born and raised "coal cracker" (Pittsburgh area) would tell me to "red up" (clean up) my room. I tried it out on my visiting, 11 year old grand daughter. She looked at me like I was from Mars.
Years ago I saw it in a book as "redd up" and it apparently was short for making a room ready for company.

When a sibling stood in front of the TV, a common response (central PA) was "you're in the road."

On "can't have your cake and eat it too", the original reference was to a beautifully decorated cake. Once it's been cut up for eating it's no longer beautiful.

I think "proof is in the pudding" was originally "The proof of the pudding is in the eating." Whether dessert tastes as good as it looks is determined by taking a bite. ("Pudding" is the name for dessert in England; it's a cornstarch- or egg-thickened milk based dessert in 'murica.)

Best -- Terry
 

Funkworks

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Interesting thread. I often wonder where and why about sayings. Who was the first person to say it.
Holy Mackerel
That's one of my favorites, because out of apparently 30,000 species of fish. Why mackerel. Very intriguing. What is it about mackerels. We may never know.

...

So I just looked it up and it's apparently a euphemism for Holy Mary, or Mother (of Jesus), or Moses, Madonna, or other religious terms starting with "M". "the way that the words trip of the tongue is very significant in how these expressions become widely used and adopted".

Also: "Holy Mackerel was almost certainly a reference to Catholics eating fish on Fridays (rather like Holy Cow is a reference to Hindus, and Holy Smoke is a jibe at incense burning and funeral pyres".

Quality information right there folks. For use in your next high stakes political or financial dicsussions.
 
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Rob Caswell

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"Still kicking."

If we were all soccer players, this one might make sense, but otherwise why should one's life be recognized by their willingness (and enthusiasm) to kick things??
 

dr wogz

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"Fake News"

but this has more to do with the interpretation of, the telling of, and the facts included (or omitted) of teh story.. which means it is usually ,ore fiction or designed to appeal to one mind-set, than be an unbiased informational piece..
 

MALBAR 70

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Anything with the word "deluxe" in the title automatically denotes that the item is of sub-par quality.
 

jjones

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Things that have become obsolete in our lifetimes, but continue to be said:
  • Hang up the phone.
  • Dial the phone.
  • To "film" something (except in Hollywood).
  • Broken record.
  • Turn on/off the lights.
Others?
The operation here that is outdated is the "turn" part. 150 years ago, a light was an oil lamp that had a dial on the side. If you turned the dial it would raise or lower the wick allowing the light to brighten or dim until it was put "out." I have one of my grand dad's old oil lamps, the one he used in his work shed well into the 1980s. When I was a child, he would always tell me to "turn out the light" which was the proper description of the action.
 

jjones

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How about rewinding a movie you are watching. Now days you don't wind anything. The proper term is fast reverse, but the winding theme sticks around from the days of film and vcr tape.
 

jjones

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Here is one for all you rocketry fans...the price is skyrocketing! LOL, may your journey be ever upward.
 

dman007

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I found my keys. They were in the last place I looked!
Of course they were!! Who keeps looking for something after having already found it!!?
 

R. S. Galileo

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I found my keys. They were in the last place I looked!
Of course they were!! Who keeps looking for something after having already found it!!?
Actually, I think the quote is "They were in the last place I would've thought to look" -- which, of course, makes sense.
 
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