I’m editing Book 7 of the Walkerville Desires series. There’s a shy girl and a shy boy so communication is difficult resulting in mistakes (even with not so shy boys and girls). I want to convey that while they may not articulate their feelings, they find other ways to ‘shore up’ their relationship – a gentle touch on the shoulder, a caress as one moves out of the room, a smile letting the other know they light up the room.
I wanted to make sure ‘shore up’ was the best word to use here.
Thank the universe, again, for google.
Anyway, I got peeled off, something I critically blame AC for doing when he does research. In other words, I went down a rabbit hole for 90 minutes. I was researching ‘shore up’ and I end up researching eggcorn and WTF.
I feel that one of my favorite utterances is being misappropriated and legitimatized.
WTF was added to dictionary with the following definition: to be used especially to express or describe outraged surprise, recklessness, confusion, or bemusement.
I was glad that crema, that layer of tan creamy froth that forms on the top of freshly made espresso has been legitimatized.
So are you ready for eggcorn? This word has really passed the mustard.This has spread like wildflowers. It’s the best thing since life’s bread.
An eggcorn according the Merriam-Webster dictionary is a word or phrase that sounds like and may be mistakenly used in a logical or credible way for another word or phrase.
The word eggcorn is itself an eggcorn; many people pronounce ‘acorn’ this way.
One of the criteria for inclusion the dictionary is ‘substantial use in a variety of sources over an extended period of time.’
The ‘extended period of time’ is vague. I think it took 12 years for ‘eggcorn’ to make it.
Never regions / nether regions
Come to not / come to naught
Curtsey call / courtesy call
World wind romance / whirlwind romance
Rot iron fence / wrought iron fence
Cold slaw / cole slaw
Pre Madonna / prima donna
Valentime’s Day / Valentine’s Day
Ice tea / iced tea (moi)
Physical policy / fiscal policy
Nip it in the butt / nip it in the bud
Mute point / moot point
Mist of things / midst of things
Medium strip / median strip
Expresso / espresso
Extreme court / Supreme court
Escape goat / scapegoat
Duck tape / duct tape (my favorite)
So in my house I blurted out many many years ago, “Where’s the pancake turner?”
I meant, of course, the TV remote.
To this day that’s what we call it.
I think that’s another topic which I may research one day soon. Any eggcorns you like?