That Oxymoron Was Emancipated!

There is a discussion going on over at Spread about Postmodernism that made me realize something about myself. I’ll use words, they’ll come up in my head and I’ll say them, and then they don’t mean what I think they mean but I use them anyway.

I do this a lot with the word “Ironic” and the word “Oxymoron”. Actually, I think I do that with “catch-22” as well. One time, when I was a youngin’ I said, “He was EMANCIPATED!” I totally pulled out the word, stretching it like a long piece of gum, like I really meant it. The guy I was talking to at the time (who happened to be my video store boss who also happened to have a cocaine addiction) said, “You mean he was freed?” (I was talking about this guy actually.)

I looked at him like he was nuts especially since we were clearly discussing how skinny this person was.

I mean, duh. Everyone knew he was so emancipated he would probably die of hunger.

10 Comments

  1. like the point in Princess Bride when the sicilian keeps saying “inconceivable” and the gentle giant tells him I don’t think you know what that word means…I love that.

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  2. I’m a grammar freak and the ones that stab me like a knife are:
    irregardless
    literally
    suposebly
    and those that use “axe” in the vein of “let me axe you a question..”

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  3. Suposebly drives me freaking crazy, too.

    I also bug myself when I (or others) say

    “That’s a whole nother story.”

    What word is that? What’s going on there?

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  4. My husband, who is a lecturer of English at the national University here, says suposebly. I gave up after five years of marriage trying to change that.

    My huge pet peeve, which my daughter has picked up from her American friends (therefore I am jumping to the conclusion that it is accepted in the USA)is to say good instead of well. I spend all day trying to correct her. I am beginning to think it is like the whole who/whom debate and that I am fighting an outdated battle.

    For myself, although i still don’t truly understand the concept of post modernism, just yesterday I found out what dogmatic meant!

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  5. Nope. Not accepted here either. But people do it ALL the time. I like to touch people when they say something like “I don’t feel good.” I’ll touch them and say, “You’re right. You feel weird.” OR “You feel just fine to me.”

    Bugs me, too Meghan.

    I forgot of one more my father used to get us with every time we said it when we were kids. When we’d tell a story or something, we’d say something like, “And then Stacy goes…..” Instead of using “said” and my father used to interrupt our story and ask, “Where did she go?”

    It was a way to teach us, and boy did it work, but buy was it frustrating. :]

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  6. And I’m still here editing. However, I can’t edit comments – “buy” instead of boy.

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  7. when I say “well” people around here look at me funny and my wife has even told me that I come off a little pretentious…

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  8. I love it how people think speaking well is pretentious.

    So, safe to say the dumber one sounds the better? To put it simply: that’s well and good retarded.

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  9. Dave Chapelle said it best, “There’s two kinds of speaking: “Street” and “Job Interview”.

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