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Old April 22 2013, 07:04 AM   #1
scotpens
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Grammar Nazi Thread: Smooshing Words Together

So, what's with this tendency in the last few years to jam two words together into one?

I don't mean "moreso" and "nevermind." Those I can grudgingly accept, since they'll probably be standard informal English within a decade.

I'm talking about people writing "anymore" when they mean "any more." Both are correct, but they have different meanings. Or "everyday" (which is an adjective, as in "These are my everyday clothes") instead of "every day" (e.g., "I wake up every day at 8 o'clock").

And then there are the NON-WORDS that are just plain wrong. Like "alot." There is simply no such word, yet I see it several times a day on the internet. Or "infact." Or "noone." Wasn't he the lead singer of Herman's Hermits?

Just had to get that off my chest.
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Old April 22 2013, 07:22 AM   #2
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Re: Grammar Nazi Thread: Smooshing Words Together

Irregardless of your pedantry I think your right. It's rediculous how the nazis ruined everything with there smooshifying.
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Old April 22 2013, 07:31 AM   #3
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Re: Grammar Nazi Thread: Smooshing Words Together

Written grammar was so much more elegant when the lower classes were illiterate.
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Old April 22 2013, 08:32 AM   #4
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Re: Grammar Nazi Thread: Smooshing Words Together

I know it's not precisely the same thing, but the ones that piss me off are things like "chillax" and "guesstimate".

"Guess" and "estimate" are so similar in meaning anyway that nothing is gained by combining them that couldn't be described perfectly well by one or the other. It's utterly pointless.

And I can't even tell you the number of times I've gone up to the gate attendants in American airports and told them that there is no such word as "deplane."

.
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Old April 22 2013, 08:45 AM   #5
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Re: Grammar Nazi Thread: Smooshing Words Together

Actually that word has been in use for over thirty years:

http://youtu.be/1x_QbVDlLbI?t=37s
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Old April 22 2013, 08:47 AM   #6
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Re: Grammar Nazi Thread: Smooshing Words Together

scotpens wrote: View Post
And then there are the NON-WORDS that are just plain wrong. Like "alot." There is simply no such word, yet I see it several times a day on the internet.
Then there IS such a word. That's how words are created, that's how language evolves.
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Old April 22 2013, 08:51 AM   #7
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Re: Grammar Nazi Thread: Smooshing Words Together

teacake wrote: View Post
Irregardless of your pedantry I think your right. It's rediculous how the nazis ruined everything with there smooshifying.
Ha ha, you said Irregardless, that isn't even a real word.
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Old April 22 2013, 08:56 AM   #8
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Re: Grammar Nazi Thread: Smooshing Words Together

I don't care so much for pedantry. Language evolves and changes; 'tis the nature of the thing, and there's a sort of tiresome "Get off my lawn!" attitude that comes with people who get hugely upset by that change. Chaucer's English is barely recognizable as the same language as modern English -- words change meaning, are removed, added, morphed, mushed together, and torn apart all the time.

I mean, seriously, of course there is such a word as 'deplane' -- just because one dislikes it doesn't mean it is not a valid word. I know what it means to deplane, and most English-speakers will also know it's meaning; it certainly seems to fit the criterion for being a word. Whether or not a word is a word is not limited to it's appearance in a certain edition of a specific dictionary! What a dull world it would be if language was static.

I am also especially fond of portmanteaux. They are a fun and funny way to play with language. The most recent one I heard that I like is "sexposition" -- a term describing the tendency for characters in "Game of Thrones" (which I still haven't seen, I just read an article about it) to remove their clothes during long, expository scenes, in order to keep the viewers watching.

I myself become pedantic only in the very specific circumstance where a word is so badly misused that it obfuscates the speaker's meaning, like using infamy or notoriety when one really means fame, or when the misuse of the word means losing the only word in the language that has that specific meaning, for example, using disinterested when one means uninterested.
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Old April 22 2013, 08:56 AM   #9
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Re: Grammar Nazi Thread: Smooshing Words Together

lvsxy808 wrote: View Post
"Guess" and "estimate" are so similar in meaning anyway that nothing is gained by combining them that couldn't be described perfectly well by one or the other. It's utterly pointless.
"Guess" and "estimate" aren't the same thing. An estimate is an approximate calculation. A guess is something you pull out of your ass.

In any case, there's nothing wrong with using the portmanteau word "guesstimate" in colloquial English.

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scotpens wrote: View Post
And then there are the NON-WORDS that are just plain wrong. Like "alot." There is simply no such word, yet I see it several times a day on the internet.
Then there IS such a word. That's how words are created, that's how language evolves.
When the majority of educated native English speakers accept it and it appears in dictionaries, then it'll be a word. Which will be never.
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Old April 22 2013, 09:01 AM   #10
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Re: Grammar Nazi Thread: Smooshing Words Together

scotpens wrote: View Post
The Mirrorball Man wrote: View Post
scotpens wrote: View Post
And then there are the NON-WORDS that are just plain wrong. Like "alot." There is simply no such word, yet I see it several times a day on the internet.
Then there IS such a word. That's how words are created, that's how language evolves.
When the majority of educated native English speakers accept it and it appears in dictionaries, then it'll be a word. Which will be never.
I suspect there are a few words you accept and use freely about which some snob whined 150 years ago. What's your cutoff point? Like, do you have a year? "All words entered into the OED prior to 1928 are real, and all those that came later are not." Isn't this a bit arbitrary and really about taste, rather than language?
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Old April 22 2013, 09:04 AM   #11
The Mirrorball Man
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Re: Grammar Nazi Thread: Smooshing Words Together

scotpens wrote: View Post
When the majority of educated native English speakers accept it and it appears in dictionaries, then it'll be a word. Which will be never.
Yeah, see, that's the conservative approach to language, but it's simply not realistic. Words don't come from dictionaries, words end up in dictionaries. It's the end of the process, not the start. If we had to wait for "educated" speakers to catch up with the evolution of language, English would simply dry up and stop evolving.
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Old April 22 2013, 09:07 AM   #12
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Re: Grammar Nazi Thread: Smooshing Words Together

tsq's moxie in this thread is all copacetic to me. Everything's coming up milhouse!
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Old April 22 2013, 09:07 AM   #13
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Re: Grammar Nazi Thread: Smooshing Words Together

The real question is does it really matter if you know what the person is trying to convey? I say press on and don't sweat the small shit, life is too short to get worked up over a few words.
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Old April 22 2013, 09:09 AM   #14
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Re: Grammar Nazi Thread: Smooshing Words Together

Gaseous Anomaly wrote: View Post
I say press on and don't sweat the small shit, life is too short to get worked up over a few words.
We embiggen the wrong things and this does NOT make us mighty.
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Old April 22 2013, 09:13 AM   #15
Gaseous Anomaly
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Re: Grammar Nazi Thread: Smooshing Words Together

teacake wrote: View Post
Gaseous Anomaly wrote: View Post
I say press on and don't sweat the small shit, life is too short to get worked up over a few words.
We embiggen the wrong things and this does NOT make us mighty.
I see what you did there.
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