Monday, 28 August 2006

Eggcorns: apt wrong phrases 1

I only recently read about "eggcorns" in New Scientist :
Eggcorns - derived from a misspelling of "acorn" - are a particular type of language error. Though incorrect, eggcorns are often more satisfying or poetic than the correct word or expression. If you didn't know how to spell the word "acorn", then "eggcorn" is a logical and satisfying alternative.

There's even a site devoted to eggcorns, the Eggcorn Database. As most of the eggcorns I've personally overheard (or, ahem, inadvertently come up with myself) are oral rather than written, I don't think I can contribute them to the database.

But I'll share some with you anyway... (maybe more of a mixed metaphor?):
  • Banging her own trumpet (guess what that's a cross between!).
  • As the flies go (for "as the crow flies...").
  • On the horns of a quandary.
  • Up a gumtree without a paddle.
And I swear this next one is absolutely true. I heard it on the Tube in an exchange between two men who were obviously talking about a mutual colleague. Again it's probably more of a mixed metaphor but I nearly choked when I heard it...

"She's always rubbing herself up against a brick wall".


kirk said...

"She's always rubbing herself up against a brick wall"

Sounds like an ex-girlfriend of mine. I miss her.

Pharmamedics said...

It sounds like a metaphor.

Improbulus said...

Kirk, I bet you do! ::)

I won't ask what you do to fill the void..

And yes I guess my own contributions are more mixed metaphors than eggcorns. But some are still quite apt...