Everything You Know about English Is Wrong
I don't know how else to tell you this...everything you know about English is wrong.
"If you love language and the unvarnished truth, you'll love Everything You Know About English Is Wrong. You'll have fun because his lively, comedic, skeptical voice will speak to you from the pages of his word-bethumped book."
-Richard Lederer, author of Anguished English, Get Thee to a Punnery, and Word Wizard
Now that you know, it's time to, well, bite the mother tongue. William Brohaugh, former editor of Writer's Digest, will be your tour guide on this delightful journey through the English language, pointing out all the misconceptions about our wonderful-and wonderfully confusing-native tongue. Tackling words, letters, grammar and rules, no sacred cow remains untipped as Brohaugh reveals such fascinating and irreverent shockers as:
- If you figuratively climb the walls, you are agitated/frustrated/crazy. If you literally climb the walls, you are Spiderman.
- "Biting the Mother Tongue": English does not come from England.
- The word "queue" is the poster child of an English spelling rule so dominant we'll call it a dominatrix rule: "U must follow Q! Slave!"
- So much of our vocabulary comes from the classical languages-clearly, Greece, and not Grease, is the word, is the word, is the word.
-Emoticons: Unpleasant punctuational predictions
"Better plotted than a glossary, more riveting than a thesaurus, more filmable than a Harry Potter index-and that's just Brohaugh's footsnorts... Imean, feetsnotes...umfeetsneets?...good gravy I'mglad I'mjust a cartoonist."
-John Caldwell, one of Mad magazine's Usual Gang of Idiots
This book guarantees you'll never look at the English language the same way again-if you write, read or speak it, it just ain't possible to live without this tell-all guide. ("Ain't," incidentally, is not a bad word.)
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acronym actually ain't alphabet apostrophe baseball bullshitternet called Celsius cliches climbing the walls cohort comma course decimation English Is Wrong English language English word entry etymology Everything You Know fact File grammar Greek Histories & Ignorant hoi polloi Ignorant Twaddle Internet jiffy joke Know About English kudo Latin Latin abbreviations letter lexeme linguistic literally login mano Middle English musical nonsense noun Old English Old French original Oxford English Dictionary peanuts perhaps persnickitors phrase plantar wart plural posh preposition pronounced punctuation Qoph quote redundant refer Richard Armour rule run batted Sahara Scrabble sense sentence setterah singular slang someone song sound speak specific Specious Histories spelling split an infinitive SPLIT INFINITIVES Steinbeck's syllable synonymous technical tempura there's things Three Dog Night tion traces back triage verb vowel What's word meaning write wrote Xtreme Etymological Stasis