8 phrases that you are using incorrectly
February 10th, 2014 in Common Mistakes
1. Good vs. well
These words are not interchangeable.
Incorrect: He did good.
Correct: He did well.
Incorrect: She sings good.
Correct: She sings well.
Incorrect: She speaks English good.
Correct: She speaks good English.
Correct: She speaks English well.
Good is an adjective. It goes before a noun. An adjective cannot be used to modify an adverb. Well is an adverb. It usually goes after the verb or verb + object.
2. Extract revenge vs. Exact revenge
The correct phrase is ‘exact revenge’. To extract something is to take it out of something else.
They extracted juice from the mangoes.
3. Leadway vs. Leeway
There is no such word as ‘leadway’. Leeway means extra space or freedom. To give somebody leeway is to give them the extra space they need.
4. Expresso vs. Espresso
Have you ever walked into a coffee shop and ordered an expresso? Well, there is no such drink. You were trying to order an espresso but ended up saying ‘expresso’.
5. Irregardless vs. Regardless
The word ‘regardless’ itself means ‘without regard’. There is no need to add the prefix ‘ir’. The word ‘irregardless’ seems like a double negative. It doesn’t make any sense.
6. Conversating vs. Conversing
To converse is to engage in conversation.
She was preoccupied with her own thoughts and didn’t converse with him.
Conversating is not a word, although many people use it in place of the correct term, conversing.
7. Scotch free and Scott free vs. Scot free
The correct expression is scot-free. Scot-free means ‘without suffering any punishment or injury’. It is an adverb.
The people who kidnapped the child will not go scot-free.
8. 360 degree change vs. 180 degree change
You have probably heard people saying that they have made a complete 360 degree change in their life. Well, if they have made a 360 degree change, then they haven’t changed at all. When you go 360 degrees you return to the exact same place where you used to be. To imply that you have completely changed your life, you have to use the expression ‘a 180 degree change’.