Monday, March 14, 2005

I just love watching the language die. Really. I mean, watching it as an outside observer of those damnable humans, I see how the English language has changed. People like me who can do this thing called "remember" can watch as the incredibly ignorant masses change words and meaning through sheer brute force and overwhelming numbers. Thinking: "hey, since I don't know and I have no means of finding out for myself, I'm going to trust whatever it is that I see in the next 10 seconds."

What am I on about? There's a new spate of posters at work. "Help knockout fraud", or something very similar to that. (I'm trying to force them into my blind spot.) Most of the people at work would see nothing wrong with that sign. They'd even think the kangaroo on there is cute, and admire the correlation with the boxing gloves said kangaroo is wearing. See, "knockout" is either a noun or an adjective. That's it. As in "He won the fight by a knockout", or "It was a knockout punch." If the sign said "Help to knock out fraud", this blog entry wouldn't exist. I realize that compound words can be tricky, but they do have different meanings than their separated counterparts. Such as the now much-maligned "everyday". I blame one car manufacturer's ad campaign for the fact that people use this interchangeably with "every day". If you've ever seen something like: "I'd like to win a bajillion dollars everyday!" rest comfortably in the knowledge that it's incredibly wrong, and whatever proofreader looked at that before it went to print will burn forever in the hell of a thousand red-hot needles thrust deep into ever-regenerating eyeballs.

So, I watch it all die. It's just sad to know that it's dying because of laziness, and not because we were conquered or anything. Yet.

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