Our Twisted English Language

Is there anything stranger than our English language?? Consider these:

  • Why is “abbreviated” is such a long word?
  • Why is “phonics” not spelled the way it sounds?
  • Why do “overlook” and “oversee” mean opposite things?
  • Why does “slow down” and “slow up” mean the same thing?
  • Why does “fat chance” and “slim chance” mean the same thing?
  • Why do “tug” boats push their barges?
  • Why is it called “after dark” when it really is “after light”?
  • Doesn’t “expecting the unexpected” make the unexpected expected?
  • Why are a “wise man” and a “wise guy” opposites?
  • Why do we put suits in garment bags and garments in a suitcase?
  • Why are they called “stands” when they are made for sitting?
  • Why do we drive on a parkway and park on a driveway ?
  • Why is the third hand on the watch called the second hand?

And here’s a couple of questions to chew on…
Q – If a word is misspelled in the dictionary, how would we ever know?
Q – If Webster wrote the first dictionary, where did he find the words?


Chris George, providing reliable PR counsel and effective advocacy. Need a trusted executive assistant, a communications can-do guy, or a go-to-scribe? Call 613-983-0801 @ CG&A COMMUNICATIONS.

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