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Just... must... vent...

Damnit people, words have meanings. And if you're trying to get a point across as an "expert," it behooves you to at least use the right words. Okay, maybe not words that are really in your particular field exactly but... Aaaarrrgh!

Sorry, I'm just here "watching" (ie, have the TV on while I'm working with documents) a program on Henry the VIII on National Geographic or something. I've barely really seen/heard any of it, but I did just pick up on one of the experts saying that he was "literally a monster incarnate" toward the end of his life.

What? Really? Did he suddenly morph into Godzilla or something? Get bitten by a vampire? No? Then DON'T USE THE WORD LITERALLY! *smack*

Sorry, that word is just flipping my "annoyance" switch more and more and more, the more people mis-use and abuse it. "Literally" has a specific meaning. This meaning is not "extremely" or "I really really mean this!" And I didn't think that it was such an obtuse definition that well-read people who know enough to be consulted as historical experts on such a program would be throwing it around like this. *sigh*

That will be all. Just had to get that off my chest. Grr.



( 13 Notes — Write a Footnote )
Feb. 9th, 2006 04:05 am (UTC)
One of the hazards of being a wrestling fan in the 80s when Gorilla Monsoon was doing colour commentary. "Oh no! Hulk Hogan is in trouble! Dino Bravo has him literally on the shelf!"
Feb. 9th, 2006 04:07 am (UTC)

I bemoan the abuse of the English language as it is, but "literally" and mis-choosing between "rain" "reign" and "rein" are the ones that really get to me, mostly because they're the ones that I tend to see so very much.
Feb. 9th, 2006 04:11 am (UTC)
"DVD's" is currently on my Must Kill list.
Feb. 9th, 2006 12:10 pm (UTC)
Using an apostrophe to pluralize an abbreviation or initialization (it's not a fucking acronym unless it spells out a word, and I am going to start killing people who call everything an acronym. Literally.) is a style question. Some style guides recommend it, others claim it is of the Devil. It's right up there with the Oxford comma. I prefer it, but many do not.
Feb. 9th, 2006 04:57 pm (UTC)
What's the Oxford comma?

I don't like apostrophed pluralizations because (weird association, I know) my brain reacts to it the same way it reacts to a wrong "it's". In that case, the possessive should not have the apostrophe, so, the "reasoning" goes in my subconscious, neither should other short things. Like abbreviations.

I never claimed my subconscious is particularly logical.

"Literally" gets my goat, too. But it could have been worse; it could have been an epidemic to misspell or mispronounce it as "laterally."

Feb. 9th, 2006 05:22 pm (UTC)
The Oxford comma is the comma that comes before the "and".

This, this, this, and this. I prefer it because it was the way I was initially taught, and because it allows me to use constructs like "This, that and the other, and those" without ambiguity about "that and the other" being a single nested item.
Feb. 9th, 2006 10:14 pm (UTC)
Just like bell bottoms and unlike Oxford commas, some styles are wrong are should not be seen in public. ;-)
Feb. 9th, 2006 04:20 am (UTC)
The "literally" thing is definitely Up There on my list o' peeves. *sigh* People suck.
Feb. 9th, 2006 04:26 am (UTC)
I hate it when people do that. It literally makes my head explode.
Feb. 9th, 2006 04:42 am (UTC)
I want to slap people who do that.
Feb. 9th, 2006 06:38 am (UTC)
Let me take this opportunity to console you on the particularly gruesome way you just lost your Warder. It's going to be a tough cleanup job.
Feb. 9th, 2006 07:01 am (UTC)
Mwahahahaha! *cracks knuckles*

Really, I didn't have to do anything. He already lost his head after all. And had to have it replaced by a teddy-bear-ectomy.

(Hrm. Maybe sleep at some point would be a good option.)
Feb. 9th, 2006 05:32 am (UTC)
but... they're history experts, not language experts!

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