Tuesday, February 20, 2007

Sometimes I Feel Like Emily Litella

I can’t tell you how many times I see the word “loose” misused for the word “lose” (loos). From www.listingrealtors.com/sellers.php
“Price too low, sells fast and you loose money.”

Loose means not tight or relaxed when used as an adjective. As a verb, it means set free. The proper word these realtors needed was “lose,” which means to be deprived of or fail to keep. It’s pronounced “looz.”


Tim said...

Maybe not. Perhaps they meant to set it free. Wouldn't surprise me - but then, how many would catch that typo?

Isn't that the Church Lady from Saturday Night Live?

Jay Croft said...

You don't have to do business with that company.

I caught a typo in a real estate website recently. I told the company, "You won't be able to sell that house to an English teacher."

Sheila said...

Tim, Emily Litella was always on a tirade of some kind or the other. She was against "busting schoolchildren," against President Ford making Puerto Rico a "steak," and against "violins" on televsion among many other things. Invariably Weekend Update co-anchor Jane Curtain would explain how Miss Litella had misheard and was wrong and Miss Litella would reply, "Never mind."

The Church Lady, on the other hand, was one of my favorite Dana Carvey characters.

Jay, I don't know that it would keep me from buying a house, but it is sloppy (now, please don't go picking through my writing anyone because you will find lots of errors). However, this is not a typo--it's an outright misused word.

Jay Croft said...

Yes, there's a difference between a typo and an error.

Another common grammatical mistake is "I could care less" when one actually means "I couldn't care less."

Have you noticed on the Weather channel, how many times the commentators say, "When all is said and done . . ."?

Dirty Butter said...

Spelling mistakes and poor word choices seems to be the norm today. It drives me crazy. How can a teacher teach the importance of spelling when the children pass by poorly spelled business signs day after day???

Sheila said...

DB, you are right. With the immediacy of e-mail and the ease of blogging, we are looser with the standards of grammar. And this filters down to the younger generations too. I'm a fairly flexible person who happens to appreciate some standards.

Naomi said...

Things like this really annoy me Sheila. The English teacher in me wants to go round and point out every spelling mistake to these people! If I was somebody wanting to sell a house I probably wouldn't go with this company if they sell houses as well as they use the Queen's English!

Sheila said...

Attention to detail is one thing that's been lost in modern haste. You are right, though, about wondering how competent a company is going to be when it is so lax.