Monday, May 03, 2004

I speak proper

If you've been reading me for a while you'll probably be aware that numbers are my thing. Mathematics was always my strongest subject at school and I think very logically.

It may come as a bit of a surprise to know that I also have a keen interest in language. The structure and rules of language, to be more precise.

My degree may have been in Maths (with German) but I sometimes think I would have enjoyed a course in Linguistics more. Every now and then I consider the possibilities of doing a second degree but I never get beyond that.

I'm currently reading Eats, Shoots and Leaves by Lynn Truss and it's got me thinking about the particular misuses of English that really get me worked up.

A lot of bad English annoys me but if there's one mistake that's guaranteed to have me cursing the offender's intellectual capacity, it's using effect when they mean affect, or vice versa.

During the recent power cut at work there were various emails that came out about failures to systems that would "effect all users" and still others that talked about the "affects of power spikes".

Grrr! I got so mad. I mean, it's not that difficult to learn the difference between the two, is it?

Which grammatical or semantic errors that people regularly make do you hate?

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