Monday, October 3, 2011

Philly's Sorry Sports Day -- and not just on the field

Phils and Eagles blow big leads, and fans anguish. I, meanwhile, gnashed my teeth at the Philly sports media and their continuing assault on good English.
    Some quick examples:
   Pronouncing last as "lass" or, worse, "lash." Likewise, pronouncing next as "nex." What is it with some sports talkers' inability to pronounce the final t on these words?
     Pronouncing versus "verse." I guess since the word is often abbreviated as "vs.," lazy talkers assume you can pronounce it without the last syllable.
    "Schematically," used by football coaches to as an adverb to describe their game-planning efforts, as in, "Schematically, we were ready for their ground game." It's a bastardization of "scheme" and smacks of "schematic," a term usually used for diagrams, especially of electrical systems. In my view, it's just another effort -- subconscious or conscious -- by these gridiron "gurus" to make their profession even more mysterious and cerebral, when in reality it ain't rocket science -- it's just blocking and tackling.
     "Harbinger of things to come" -- a redundancy (a harbinger is a foreshadowing of future events) uttered by Jody McDonald, newly returned to WIP. McDonald is also a member of the lash/nex tribe, and a man who has a tendency to use big words that he is really not familiar with (much like Tim McCarver).
      I also notice, and not just on sports talk shows, the over-use and misuse of the phrase "throw under the bus."  This was originally meant to apply to someone who is blaming someone else for something that is the first person's fault. Now it seems to be applied whenever simple criticism is involved.
     OK, thus endeth today's lesson. Stay tuned for more later this week.


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