Sayings everyone (yes, me too) gets wrong #WriterWednesday #AmWriting

We all make mistakes. I probably make more than the average human, but that’s just because I’m a risk taker. Or at least that’s the lie I tell myself. There are certain sayings that us mere mortals get wrong again and again. Here are my favorites:

Epitome vs. Epitomy – Epitomy isn’t actually a word despite how often I try to write it. Luckily, I always doubt the spelling and google reminds me I’m an idiot because Epitomy is not a word.

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Blind-sided vs. blind sighted – I admit that I have no idea where the confusion with sighted comes from and, therefore, have no idea how to write a snarky comment about it.

I couldn’t care less vs. I could care less – If you say you could care less, you actually do care somewhat. If you don’t give a gosh darn, then you should say “I couldn’t care less”.

Regardless vs. Irregardless – Regardless means without regard. Throwing on “IR” on the beginning makes the word a double negative, which makes no sense since you end up with “without without regard”. Unfortunately, irregardless seems to flow off the tongue easier. Must. Stop. That.

Tongue in cheek vs tongue and cheek – Tongue in cheek means to be sarcastic or insincere. The idea arises from suppressed mirth like when you bite your tongue so as to not laugh out loud. Not sure what a tongue and cheek are supposed to symbolize.

Wreak havoc vs. wreck havoc – Let me tell you I’m not wrecking any havoc as that indicates I’m actually destroying that havoc. Oh no, not I. If you’re talking about wreaking havoc, you’re usually referring to someone creating havoc. In that case, wreak is correct.

One and the same vs. one in the same – ‘One in the same’ doesn’t really mean anything, does it? ‘One and the same’ means that the two things are the same, which is probably what you’re trying to convey.

Nip it in the bud vs nip it in the butt – A bud is just beginning so yeah nip that thing before it grows. Nipping it in the butt, on the other hand, just indicates you’re just dirty minded or something.

For all intents and purposes vs For all intensive purposes – No matter how strongly you feel about the subject, the phrase ‘for all intensive purposes’ is still wrong. ‘For all intents and purposes’ on the other hand means that you’re covering all the possibilities and isn’t that what you meant anyway?

I could go on and on, but the above are some of my favorites. What about you? Comment below with your favorite. (FYI: spellcheck caught most of the mistakes above. It’s a pain in the a$$, but spellcheck does help. Sometimes.)

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  1. “I could care less” – UGH! Used quite frequently in books and drives me bonkers! Self-published or traditionally published doesn’t matter. Everyone misses it!

    Then I read something not too long ago which said while the phrase was incorrect, it was ACCEPTABLE!

    And the dumbing down continues. 😒

  2. I’m so guilty of the ‘one in the same’ and I think it’s just because that’s the way it sounds when people say it, so I have to look it up to make sure, and I’m always wrong LOL. My others are:

    Choking vs Chocking, because spellcheck won’t catch it.

    Worshiped vs Worshipped. When the dreaded red squiggly kept showing up under ‘worshipped’ I swore my software was broken, so I looked up the reason for this and now that I know the truth, this word, when misspelled by others (especially on book covers) glares at me like an eye sore. I blame grade-school grammar lessons that never teach you everything, just the basics, so you spend your life believing wholeheartedly in these English Language Laws that really don’t even apply to the messed up English language all that much once your vocabulary has extended beyond the sixth grade.

  3. Is it “buck naked” or “butt naked?” (I don’t think “but naked” counts.)
    “Hopefully” is also commonly misused as in “Hopefully I will be happy but naked tomorrow.” It means I will be happy but naked in a hopeful attitude.

  4. At least you know how to pronounce epitome. The one that sticks in my mind is the chap who wrote ‘prostate’ when he meant ‘prostrate’. Goodness knows what was going through his mind at the time.

  5. My favourite is wanton vs wonton. A wanton woman is promiscuous. A wonton woman is delicious and dumpling-like 😀 Don’t even think about a wanton wonton!

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