Ten Things You’re Saying Wrong

We found a list of a bunch of words and phrases you might be mispronouncing. And if someone corrects you, you look like an idiot. Here are five that can REALLY make you sound dumb . . .

  1. “Scapegoat.” Some people say “ESCAPE goat.” But a scapegoat is someone who takes the blame. And saying “ESCAPE goat” sounds like you’re talking about a loose farm animal.
  2. “Biding your time.” Some people say “BITING your time,” which is wrong. The word “bide” means “to wait for.” Saying someone’s “biting their time” doesn’t make sense.
  3. “Play it by ear.” It’s a music term. If you play it by ear, you’re doing it without reading sheet music. Apparently some people think it’s “play it by YEAR.”
  4. “Pass muster,” which means you’re meeting a certain standard. Some people think it’s “pass MUSTARD,” which is something you might do at the table . . . or something your digestive system might do after you eat a hot dog.
  5. “Moot point” . . . spelled M-O-O-T. It usually means something’s irrelevant or hypothetical. Some people say “MUTE point,” which is wrong. And there was also an episode of “Friends” where Joey thought the saying was, “It’s a MOO point.”

Here are five more common phrases we get wrong all the time . . .

  1. “For all intensive purposes.”  It’s really “for all INTENTS and purposes.”  The other way is like saying, “for all these very thorough purposes.”  Which doesn’t make sense.
  2. “Nip it in the butt.”  The correct phrase is “nip it in the BUD,” like a flower bud.  The other way makes it sound like you want to BITE someone’s butt.
  3. “One in the same.”  If you say it like that, it doesn’t make sense.  The real phrase is, “one AND the same,” which means two things are alike.
  4. “Case and point.”  The correct way to say it is, “case IN point.” It’s like saying, “Here’s an example of the point I’m trying to make.”
  5. “I could care less.”  If you say it like that, you’re really saying you DO care about something.  The correct phrase is, “I COULDN’T care less.”

Here’s one more weird one:  “You’ve got another thing coming” is technically wrong.    The original phrase was, “If that’s what you think, you’ve got another THINK coming.”  We dropped the first part a long time ago, and now everyone says “thing.”  So in that case, you sound like an idiot if you say it RIGHT.

(Business Insider)