It was not my intention to open a forum covering the range of abuse of the English language. At some point, we’ll have to move on, but this is too much fun to cut off yet. If we had stopped, I wouldn’t have been able to mention what happened at dinner tonight in Seattle. I thanked the waitress for her good service. She said, “Hey, no problem.” When did we lose “You’re welcome?”
I like this one from Noel Silverman in New York.
High on my list are “any and all,” and “each and every,” both needlessly redundant, except that “needlessly redundant” is itself needlessly redundant, or at very least redundant.
Then there’s “ya know what I’m sayin,” and its partner in obfuscation “ya know what I mean,” both of which seem overwhelmingly to be used by people who either haven’t thought about what they’re saying or, having thought about it, have failed to convey what they mean.
For closers, I would nominate “She goes…then he goes…” in relating a conversation. Then I go.
Ted O’Reilly chimes in from Toronto, expanding the discussion to include pronunciation.
And, if we can get into mispronunciations, the word “patina” is, correctly, PAT’-in-uh, not pa-TEENA’.
All right, I’ll see your patina and raise you one data. Data is of Latin derivation and properly pronounced DATE’-uh, not DAT’-uh, although you wouldn’t know that from listening to most people who work in the data field.
For previous entries in this fiesta of annoying phrases and words, go here and here.
Your mention of data reminds me of my pet peeve. That word is plural (the singular being datum). People consistently use a singular verb with it though (The data is based on on a large sample size, rather than: The data are …)
One last pet peeve: comprise. That word is NOT followed by “of”.