Why yes they have. In fact last week’s paycheck was covered with mustard, relish, and some sort of pickle.
This quote is from a radio commercial I heard today advertising a financial planning/restructuring firm. I’m not sure I’d go to a financial expert who doesn’t know the difference between garnish (a condiment) and garnishee/garnishment (withholding of wages to satisfy a debt). What kind of financial management advice would they give? “Hold the mayo”?
How often do you see people use the word breaks when referring to a vehicle’s stopping system, aka brakes? You can break your brakes, but you really can’t brake your breaks. The words sound the same but they are not interchangeable although it seems that 75% of the population think so.
And don’t get me started on the possessive/plural issue. When I see a sign like this I always wonder, drop-in’s what are welcome? What do drop-ins have that anyone would welcome, especially a hearing clinic? It’s confusing as hell.
Here’s another favourite: “Him and me went to the mall”. Say what???? Would you say, “Me went to the mall”? Of course not, unless you're (your/yore) trying to do a bad Tonto impersonation.
And it’s not just in common speech or local advertising you see these errors; it’s in media as well. The ‘amount’ (aaaaak!) of linguistic errors found in your local paper every day is appalling. If so-called professionals can’t be bothered to use the language properly what hope do we have for the great unwashed who take their cues from people who should know better.
Now I know that languages (language’s?) evolve over time but we’re not talking about spelling changes or new words entering the lexicon. These are basic structural elements to the language that millions of people speak every day and which deserve some respect. Years ago when I was hiring staff a resume with basic linguistic errors such as these went straight into File 13. If I were to do the same thing today I expect I’d have a hard time filling any position. Now, as long as a word passes Microsoft’s spell check, it’s fine.
It makes me crazy. (And a ranting pedant, but so be it.)