One of the ones that makes my skin crawl is when people use "of" instead of the contraction of "have." For example, "My plants died. I should of watered them before visiting my family for a week."


What are some of yours?

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Wow! Being from the East Coast, I've only ever heard of Tijuana but I've never been there nor do I ever recall seeing it written. Today I learned, it's NOT actually spelled Tia Juana. (listen to the audio pronunciation on both that and the Tijuana page - heh!)


If you think that one is bad, you should hear the pronunciation of Martinez, Georgia. The locals pronounce it MARTnez with no i, emphasis on the first syllable, and that thick southern drawl. It wouldn't have bothered me quite as much if everyone there hadn't corrected me for 8 years every time I pronounced it properly!

Heh, heh.  You should try talking to my grandparents about Hurricane, West Virginia.  They call it HURR-ə-kin.  My grandparents mash the last two syllables together so quickly that, in the wake of such a mind-blowingly heavy 'URR,' you're can't really be sure if there really were any other vowels involved.  For their sake, you certainly hope not. 


I say ˈhər-ə-kān.  I am corrected.

I hear ya. I'm originally from Baltimore, Maryland. The locals pronounce it Balmer, Merlin.

Although I didn't agree with the way this discussion started and which then went on to attack the English for the way they use their own language,I'd like to stand up for the native English people who don't like the way Americans mispronounce words from the English language itself let alone foreign  oh and god save the Queen = )

You're not alone. I read that somewhere, too. I think it was on a linguist's blog, but I don't remember exactly.

Depends which way you look at it. Yes, because of the time when the pilgrims settled, American English has a lot of the features of Late Middle English, explaining some of the variant spellings of certain things. But it was the Webster dictionary that really made a lot of the changes, like the drop of "u" in "colour" and "labour".

However, even though British English moved on into Modern English, the rise of technology and globalisation has meant that we're actually starting to take on a lot of the Americanisms that we pretend to detest. The OED has actually allowed "spelled" and "spelt" as past tense forms of "to spell". So in the end, it's all circular anyway. As long as people can understand each other, it shouldn't matter!

By the way, this came from my English Language A2 class, so there may be some discrepancies, but I do have a rough idea of what I'm talking about =)

It probably makes sense for mainstream English to be determined by the largest group of native speakers ("native" here meaning born into a region where English is the prevailing language).

I heard an academician say that the Oxford English one hears today in Shakespearean plays is nothing like the English of Shakespeare's day. Actually, he said, the English of that time resembled the brogue of the American Carolinas more than anything else.

Once in a while I catch people saying or typing things that make me cringe. Then I remember that language is dynamic it constantly changes and each person uses and experiences language in slightly different ways. I'm not saying we throw all our pronunciation and grammar out the window it is important to understand others and to be understood and to have formal ways to communicate but to nit pick about little things in an average human conversation is a waste of time.

I used the "dynamic and constantly changes" argument with my English teachers in High School they agreed but refused to raise my grade.

Well, school is one of those place that you are expected to use formal ways to communicate. 

There are two different dimensions operating here. 1) Your usage is correct in one sense if people understand what you say. At the same time, 2) language properly used is usually better understood by more people than when it is misused.


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