Friday, May 18, 2012

please, please stop misspelling these words

photo: Didi

I realize that not everyone can spell well, but I think that we can all try a little bit harder on some rather common words.

If you are a spelling offender (or will realize you are once you're done reading this list), then please start spelling the following words correctly:
1. Definitely.  It is not "definately" or (even worse) "defiantly."  "Definately" is definitely not a word (and according to the NSFW Oatmeal, it may have other implications).  And "defiantly" definitely is a word, but it's a word that means you defiantly chose to not to study for your spelling test in third grade and still can't spell.

2. Congratulations. Graduation and wedding seasons are upon us, which can only mean that facebook will be lighting up with hundreds of misspelled "congradulations" hitting my newsfeed.  I can only imagine that "Congradulations" was the clever pun of some dillweed at Hallmark that apparently 93% of the country didn't realize was a pun.  There is no "grad" in "congratulations," and if you graduated junior high, you should know that.

3. Your, you're.  It almost feels cliche even mentioning this one, yet sadly I must.  If you're still spelling these wrong, then I'm not going to be your friend much longer.

4. There, they're, their.  "There" is a way to tell how smart people are.  If they're still confusing these words, punch their stomach until they figure it out.  The more times a person has to puke before they learn their lesson, the dumber they are.

5. Than, then.  Few grammar mistakes annoy me more than when people screw this up.  Then, it makes me want to step on their birthday cakes.

6. Obese.  While this one isn't as commonly misspelled, my students often used to write it as "obeast."  Yes, because doctors were trying to put into words how beast-like extremely fat people are, and then it dawned on them: "obeast."

7. Intents and, intensive.  This is maybe stretching the misspelling theme a bit too far, but I don't care.  For all intents and purposes, don't say "intensive purposes" around me unless you want me to take you to the duck pond and duct tape bread to your shirt until you have had this lesson pecked into you.

Bonus: 8. Fewer and less.  This is not a spelling mistake (which is why it's "bonus" - get off my back).  Use "fewer" when referring to things you can count.  Use "less" when referring to something you can't.  I.e. After I showered, I was less dirty (because you can't really count dirt).  After I ate two pieces of pizza, there were fewer slices for everyone else (because you can count pizza slices unless you're pregnant).

I'm certain there are others, but those are the ones that come to mind right now.  Any others I forgot (besides the ones The Oatmeal mentions)?


  1. This was two much, but it had a great affect on me. It was funner than I thought ;) (Sorry, I couldn't help it)

  2. Raj, many of these are grammar mistakes NOT spelling lol 1,3,4,5,7, and 8 are all issues of grammar rather than spelling. I will forgive you this time for using the wrong word, if you forgive me for my misuse of than and then and fewer and less. Deal?

    1. Haha. I agree that these are problems of grammar by nature, but I maintain that they manifest themselves in spelling errors. As such, we would both be right (in my opinion). I will forgive your misuse - just don't do it anymore. ;)

  3. The main problem is people are just dumb and lazy, and public education has neither the intention nor the ability to do anything about it. Also, you should step on their birthday cakes. I shall step on their presents. :)


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