Saturday, October 22, 2011

Top 5 Annoyingly Misspoken Words

Language snob alert.  These misspoken words aren't egregious penalties worthy of punishment, but boy are they annoying.  You've heard them all.  You might even say a few incorrectly.  Well, school's in session.

5: Jewelry - "Jewlery."  First, yes, I know it may be said (and spelled) differently in GB and Australia.  In the US, say the word "Jew," then the Spanish word "el," and add the "ry" pronounced "ree." It is not pronounced "Jew-lur-ee."  Although this incorrect pronunciation is ubiquitous and I'm sure it will be an accepted form soon.

4: Chipotle - "Chipolte."  For some reason, people have trouble putting the "t" before the "l."  This mistake has been around quite some time, but has become more common with the Chipotle restaurant chain. It's "chi-poe-t-lay," not "chi-pole-tay."

3: Probably - "Probly."  There is an "ab" in the middle there, folks.  Just sayin.'

2: Espresso - "Expresso."  It's got an "s" in there, not an "x."  However, spelling it with an "x" is actually an accepted variant.  Therefore, if you correct someone, you are in the wrong!  But this list is for annoying misspoken words.  I'm counting a technically proper, but very uncommon variant as misspoken, and this one is certainly annoying--when you know the preferred term, it's impossible not to notice someone using the "x" form.

1: Frustrated - "Fustrated."  You must have the "r" in there.  No question.  Leaving it out is incorrect.  It isn't even difficult to pronounce, it's just learned incorrectly.  This grates on my nerves, and is the one word on the list I might actually speak up about. 

Best joke about a mis-heard (not quite misspoken) word: A father is speaking to his daughter's boyfriend.  He says, "Since you are getting serious with my daughter, you should know, in the interest of full disclosure, that she has acute angina."  The boyfriend says, "Yeah, well you should see her tits!"  Comments below, and share us on FB, Twitter, and G+.


  1. Me fail English? That's unpossible!

  2. From my friend Elizabeth: supposably.

  3. That whole "fustrated" thing seems to be a relatively recent development. I don't remember so many people mispronouncing it before the last couple of years. Who is to blame for this??!!?

  4. David, you need to come to India to see how important your post is! Almost 50% of English speakers here go wrong when it comes to #1.
    #5 is also quite high in the "frequently misspoken words" here.A very good observation skill is what you have I must say!