The TEFL Life: A TEFL blog

a story about bad grammar and non-existent punctuation and my TEFL adventures

Common mistakes we shouldn’t be making

We all know there are some mistakes our learners make when using English (and that’s totally acceptable) but there are loads of mistakes that English-speakers themselves make when using their own language.

I don’t mean to sound all preachy on this but having spent the morning catching up on news and then falling into the trap of reading the comments section, I feel there is a need for all of us to calm down and take a minute to think about our word choice.

The frightening thing is, I’m not even talking about the its/it’s, your/you’re, there/their chaos – because I assume we all know the difference between those and I’ll (kindly) write those off to typos or exhaustion – but there are a few humdingers which crop up time and time again and I think maybe people don’t know what they are saying.

And they should.

So here, either to educate yourself or to give you a few good giggles, are a few of my favourite vocabulary mistakes we sometimes make when using English:

For all intensive purposes, I think you are wrong.

No, my friend, it is you who are wrong. What you really mean is: for all intents and purposes.

It’s a doggy dog world out there.

Hmm. Where I live it’s a dog eat dog world, but maybe you live somewhere different. And weird.

I’m going to do it, irregardless of the consequences.

Stop right there. Before you do anything, irregardless is not a word. Repeat: not a word. (Hint: use regardless)

Please bare with me for a moment.

Considering that ‘bare’ means ‘to be naked’, I’d rather not, thank you. I’ll be happy to bear with you, though.

The rain wrecked havoc on my hair.

Just. Not. Possible. It wreaked havoc.

I literally died yesterday.

Did you really? Welcome back!

If you think that, then you’ve got another thing coming.

Just, no. You’ve got another think coming. Make sense?

 I feel like I might loose my mind.

No, that would be me, losing my mind.

I have alot of friends.

Not anymore.

And now for a few that I just have no words for:

Nothing pacific comes to mind.

My sister is lack toast intolerant.

Hopefully, they’ll nip it in the butt before it becomes a real problem.

Again, I want to repeat that I am not on a high horse here (or whatever other animal you think it might be). I’m sure there are words and phrases I make mistakes with and I’m happy for someone to point them out to me.

But people, please.


6 comments on “Common mistakes we shouldn’t be making

  1. Alan Colquhoun
    November 3, 2016

    How about all the illegible voters that are referred to by everyone from the president down (including dome from the electoral commission)

    • Kirsten C
      November 3, 2016

      Haha, Alan! There are actually to many to mention. 🙂

      • Anonymous
        November 4, 2016


      • Kirsten C
        November 4, 2016

        That was my point!

  2. Gabriel Clark
    August 24, 2017

    Ha ha! Great examples all round.

    Gotta disagree with “literally,” though. This use was added to the OED a while back:

    I know. It literally blew my mind, too.

    Thanks for the awesome post(s)!

    • Kirsten C
      August 24, 2017

      Mind. Blown. Literally. hahahaha.
      But thanks for letting me know.
      Since 2011! This is a strange world we live in 😉

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This entry was posted on November 3, 2016 by in humour, language, Uncategorized and tagged , , .
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