Friday, 16 June 2017

Friday Five: Verbs that are not nouns

You are invited
I know that language changes and develops and is not set in stone. I studied linguistics and etymology and I agree that language is a metaphorical rich tapestry. I love the smorgasbord of our polyglot vocabulary based on an olio of portmanteau words and phrases. I do, however, desperately dislike the way many otherwise intelligent people use words out of their correct context when there are plenty of available words they could use instead if they weren't so lazy or slavishly devoted to the current fashion of worshiping youthful inexperience and ignorance. 

I realise that as long as one can make sense of what is being said, then the aim of communication has been achieved, and that this is perfectly acceptable for someone who does not speak English as their primary language, or is a child. My point is simply: if you are fortunate enough to know how to speak properly, you should do it. Some basic abuses of the English language that will always make me judge the perpetrators are the attempt to use nouns as verbs (more of which later) and vice versa.

5 Verbs that are not nouns:
  1. Invite - One invites someone to attend an event; if one is lucky, one receives an invitation to attend. I really don't understand why this is difficult to comprehend.
  2. Intercept - Sporting commentators are not exactly esteemed as oracles of oratory, but they are generally responsible for this breach of grammar. When a player latches onto a pass meant for another player in football, rugby, hockey or netball, it is an interception, not 'an intercept'.
  3. Build/ Rebuild - I blame Reality TV for many things as it happens, but one is the proliferation of using words out of context because the perfectly adequate word that already exists is somehow simply not cool enough. For example, when renovating or reconstructing a house, presenters and 'contestants' often refer to 'the build' or 'the rebuild' as they pull down walls and rip up floorboards.
  4. Eat - I really hate this one. When people ask where they can go to get 'some eats', it takes a huge amount of restraint to refrain form telling them exactly where they can go with their 'fake language'. Do they mean meal? Do they mean food? It's almost as bad (but not quite) as adults referring to a delicious treat as 'tasty noms'. This puerile expression comes from Sesame Street's Cookie Monster. Yes, the character was cute and everything - when you were a child. Even on a programme which featured brightly coloured puppets trying to cope with the simple mechanics of life, he wasn't exactly the brightest crayon in the box. So why would any adult wish to imitate the sound he made when stuffing his face? It's not cute or endearing; it's pathetic and irritating. Stop it. 
  5. Disconnect - Whenever anyone says something along the lines of 'there is a disconnect between parties', I assume they went to business school but didn't manage to graduate, and I automatically discount their opinion. Yes, I know they may have something interesting and worthwhile to say, but as there is a disconnection/ discrepancy/ divergence/ division/ dichotomy/ detachment/ breach between their thoughts and their words, I can't be bothered to listen.
A furry blue muppet with the speech ability of a three year old.

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