Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Language Oddities that should go away

“I could care less”

Could ya? This is actually a statement of how middle of the road you currently are. I could care more, I could care less, I’m basically right in the middle. In its essence, it is a ‘nothing’ statement. If you are trying to tell me how utterly indifferent you are, you are leaving the window open for actually caring less than you do, so it isn’t all that definitive now is it?

“Not for nothing”

“Not for nothing, I really enjoyed this Chicken Scapellini.” What are you talking about? So this statement isn’t for absolutely nothing? OK, thanks for letting me know. When would you use a statement that is actually for nothing? “For absolutely nothing, I have a cracked tooth.” How would you react to that statement?

“For what it’s worth…”

“For what it’s worth, I really enjoyed this Chicken Carbotellini” Why does that statement have to have a pre-set worth? Can’t the statement just stand on its own? I liked your chicken. Done. Don’t try to preface it with some kind of importance scale. Where does the scale start? The proceeding statement will not be worth much, or may be worth a lot, I’ll leave that up to you to decide.

“Any Italian-pronounced word with the ending vowel chopped off”

Most people know someone who is 100 percent, or at least mostly, Italian. If you do then you also know they have a curious habit of dropping the ending vowel off of words, mostly food for some reason. “Mozarell” (instead of Mozzarella) “Rigot” (instead of Ricotta) “Rigaton” (instead of Rigatoni) Why is this? I sure as hell don’t know. Anyway, just when you have them all figured out, they start including vowels for apparently no reason. Pepperoni (instead of “Peperon”) Spaghetti (instead of “Spaghet”) What the hell is going on here? And why is it only food? Are they trying to mess with me? Why isn’t it

“God Bless Americ.”
“I’ll see you next Frid.”?
“I bought a car this weekend. It’s a Hond Civic.”
“Welcome to New Jers, the Garden Stat.”
“I certainly am enjoying this Bologn sandwich.” (Another food one)

Give me an instruction manual or a map or something.

“FYI”

“For Your Information” Wow, thank you. For my own personal information. For me to keep in my own information warehouse. How kind. “FYI, you must wear pants in this library.” Because obviously, my information database was missing that entry before.

“Everything happens for a reason”

The king of all nothing statements. Everything happens for a reason? You’ll quickly notice that people only use this phrase when something good is about to happen (or just happened).

“I cut my toe off with my weed whacker, but when I went to the hospital, they replaced my toe with a solid steel Swiss army knife, and I got a date with the hot nurse who took care of me!”
“See, it’s like I always say, everything happens for a reason.”

Are you honestly, with a straight face, sitting there and telling me that the reason I cut my toe off was so that I could have it replaced with an all purpose tool used for a variety of everyday tasks, followed by a dinner date with Nurse Bimbo? I thought the reason I cut my toe off was because I was completely drunk and trying to use a weed whacker to remove the little hairs on the top of my foot. That is also a reason. “Everything happens for a variety of reasons” maybe? Some things happen for a reason, some things just happen and then other things happen after that, followed be even more things. Possibly related, possibly unrelated. I guess that’s too long of a phrase to say at a funeral.

“I’ll keep you in my thoughts”

Another thing you say to someone going through a hard time. I can think about my 3rd grade math teacher for 1.2 seconds, and technically I just kept her in my thoughts (for fewer than 2 seconds). Did that help her (or me) in any way or do anything discernible other than divert my attention away from my triple cheeseburger? No. This is a nicer way of saying “I won’t visit you, or make contact with you, other than to let your name pass through my brain once in a while. Won’t that be nice?”

Let’s make an effort to identify and eliminate all language oddities. Yes We Can!

3 reaction(s)::

DUTA said...

Well, I wouldn't eliminate all language oddities. Some of them are funny and make the language and life more colorful.

Courtney said...

haha you're right. “I could care less” is such a dumb thing to say. People often say this when they want to say "I COULDN'T care less". Stupid people!

CB said...

"Because obviously, my information database was missing that entry before."

This had me rolling. Too funny!

I haven't stopped by here in a while. Congrats on all the good stuff btw. :)Hope you're doing well.

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