* Getting haircuts
* Walking around in need of a haircut
* SUVs in front of me on the freeway
* SUV drivers who don’t understand why I won’t let them in front of me
(Sorry, I know all this SUV stuff is cliché. But to me, driving an SUV is like bringing a booster seat to the movies. Just it’s worse because at the movies blocking my view only costs me enjoyment of a movie. On the freeway, blocking my view can cost me my life.)
* The myth that the word “one” can never be plural
* Sentences with too many prepositional phrases, subordinate clauses and other crammed-in bits: “As she looked back on her youth in that town outside of Portland on the ocean with all the fish, knowing full well that the man with the mustache which wasn’t well trimmed with decent clippers, she knew her life had been worth living.”
* Having been taught that a comma always goes before “too” even though clearly that’s not how everyone does it
* “A whole nuther”
I’m totally with you on the SUV issue. They’re such obnoxious symbols of our age. I hate to see clusters of them on the freeway.
Nuthers scare me, especially the whole ones.
I enjoy your blog and your column, "A Word, Please." I also enjoy diagramming sentences, so I am not sure what that means.
Concurring with all of your annoyances, I cautiously contribute another linguistic nuisance, which is "at the end of the day." It is peculiarly popular with political pundits on cable news shows, who preface their punditry with "At the end of the day," before telling us what we are supposed to consider important. Ultimately, it's all goofy, and I am sure if they overused "ultimately," I would tire of that also.
There was a cartoon in the L.A. Times just a few days ago that did a lovely job of skewering "at the end of the day."
That's one of those expressions that's annoying when someone else uses it, yet somehow so forgivable when I do.
Of course, that's the kind of thinking that brought us, "My bad." So I guess I need to try harder. At the end of the day, I suppose I'm just lazy.
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