Forthwith are a few more things I wish people would stop saying. Mostly these are grammatical miscues.
- “I’m good” as a response “How are you?” “Good” is an adjective that describes your character. The question asks how you are feeling at the moment, not what kind of person you are. The grammatical answer is “I’m well” or “Fine.”
- “Wall Street to Main Street” This, along with a few variations, seem to be the latest political mantra. I guess it is supposed to show the common people that the politician is one of them, and not some Washington bureaucrat or Wall Street fat cat. Sorry, politicians, but when I hear that line, I want to jump into the TV and scream at you: “Enough with the clichés!” I personally want Wall Street to do well, as my pension and IRA depend on a strong stock market. And aren’t we a capitalistic economy? If Wall Street fails, don’t the rest of us suffer? Now I realize that the hatred is directed at the company managers who get huge bonuses whether the company does well or not. Okay, go after the individual offenders, not the whole system! Besides, around here it is the big box stores hurting Main Street, not the stock market.
- “I could care less.” So, care less if you are able. The saying is “I couldn’t (notice the negative) care less,” indicating that the speaker has zero interest in the subject at hand. To say one could care less, means that person has at least some interest.
- Using the past tense verb form instead of the past participle and vice-versa. Here in the Midwest, people are prone to confuse verb forms. They say, “I seen you at the store.” Or else “I’ve went to St. Louis often.” I used to correct it whenever I heard it (as Mrs. L. can testify), but now I repeat it to them correctly in a question: “You saw me at the store? Why didn’t you say ‘Hello’?” “How often have you gone to St. Louis? Once a month or more?” Like directly correct them, this approach doesn’t get them speaking the Queens English, but it makes me feel better. One of the worst offenders is someone I work with, i.e. another teacher! He used to mock President Bush for his mispronunciation, yet he constantly mispronounces common words, like “supposably” in place of supposedly.