Tuesday, February 24, 2009

#10 Things I Love

#10: Words

You're going to hate me after this post, because it's kind of soapbox-y. But honestly, it's all in good fun. So here we go.

I have a handful of favorite words. Topping the list is "archipelago." I love a clever pun or a phrase with a flourish (like "a phrase with a flourish" for instance). I even like smashing words together to come up with new words (e.g. "friendationship").

My love for words has prompted me to keep a list of the non-words I encounter. The posers, if you will. They've been slowly creeping into our vocabulary, and I'd like to make a stab at eliminating them from our lexicon. Here we go:

- Comfortability / Uncomfortability
These two cause me great discomfort. I'd like to feel more comfort.

- Irregardless
Regardless of whether you think this is a word or not, you shouldn't use it.

- I's
Example of usage: "Come to Lisa and I's apartment."

This got really screwed up because teachers told us that we should always use "I" when referring to ourselves. But that's only part of the story. Without getting all Little, Brown Handbook on you, here's a quick way to determine whether you should use "I" or "me" in your sentence. How would you say that same sentence if Lisa weren't involved? You'd say, "Come to my apartment." Let's try another one. What about "Have dinner with Lisa and I?" Eliminate Lisa and what you're left with is, "Have dinner with I." FAIL.

Proper usage:

"Come to Lisa's and my apartment."
"Have dinner with Lisa and me."

One thing you can always bank on, though: "I's" is never a word.

I know you didn't ask for an English lesson, so feel free to send I your hate mail now. It will bring I great uncomfortability when Lisa and me read it. Teehee. :)



Chip Gorman said...

Since you've been MIA for a while, someone had better comment so that you know we're listening.

I agree with your word rant. As an author and songsmith, I would expect no less of you. Sadly, however, "comfortability" actually IS in the dictionary. I know! That's what I said! A pastor we once had used it all the time and it bugged me until I looked it up, and it's there. Why? Why? I have no idea, since "comfort" is a perfectly good word and half as long.

Do you ever try to define the "words" in the captcha verification phrases? The current captcha I see below is "fathutom," which I uppose must be a small unit of understanding--and ability to barely comprehend something.

Christine said...

HA!!! I saw the "I's" thing on someone's blog just yesterday and thought that didn't look write.

Them Chandlers said...

Ah...a girl after my own heart. The misuse of "I" is a pet peeve of mine. Glad I'm not alone!

Carla Jean said...

Irregardless is NOT A WORD and makes me want to scream a little! Ack!!!

Lindsay said...

For all intensive purposes, this was a good post.

Wait a minute....


TLC said...

Hey Chip!

That's where I've heard it too! Two different pastors! It's okay though, because I was obtaining a lot of wisdom and only had to discard that one word, so it's ultimately worth it. :)

I tried looking up "comfortability" on http://www.merriam-webster.com and couldn't find it, though... what dictionary did you find it in?

Hope you're having a stellar day!
TLC :)

Rachel said...

AMEN!!! ha ha

Chip Gorman said...


Hope you're having a great day too!

I found comfortability in dictionary.com as a "related word" to comfortable, but I looked it up in my old-school shelf dictionary the first time it bothered me a few years back (and confirmed I was not recalling incorrectly on dictionary.com last night.) No idea which version it was in at home but we have at least a merriam webster and an American Heritage. Out of town right now so I can't confirm.

We saw you perform in Dallas at the Opening Bell last year, our first time there, and we've gone back there a few times since. My only New Year's resolution was to listen to and support more live music. We've seen some good folks! Hope you make it back to the area again soon.

germaine said...

heh! I am a ginormous fan of combining words to make new words...

and EVERY time I hear someone say "irregardless" I can no longer concentrate on what they are saying... I begin to have this strange conversation in my brain... ;)

Robin said...

My wife has a major issue with singers who merge without you into "withoutchu". It's funny to watch.

Katie said...

My pet peeve is "alot". . . It's two words people-"a" and "lot"

amy ellen said...

BA HA HA. You know what drives me crazy? Supposably...as opposed to the real word, which is supposedly. Wow. Way to make me cringe every time and want to bop one on the head with a grammar text from the early '60s.

Anonymous said...

Totally agree about comfortability.
But my question is, what about "drinkability"? I was debating this one with a roommate as he drank a cold one.

Anonymous said...

BY THE WAY, I can't wait for your show in Denton tonight. It's been too long! :O)

Carlyle McCullough said...

I knew I liked you for some reason! I'm a closet word cop myself. In fact, I have to be careful - I've found people down here in Texas don't like to be corrected. They're liable to chunk a rock at you or tump you over or something similar...

Hi stranger! Long (long, long, long) time no see. Sure wish we could get you down here again some day - lots has changed around here. Hope you and yours are well! God bless, Carlyle (in Dallas).

Lauren said...

I totally agree with you, especially the "me" versus "I" thing. That's my pet peeve, and my pastor does it all the time. It bothers me to the point that I have trouble concentrating on the sermon. Here's a good website for us (for we?) grammar geeks: