A 2012 online article by The Atlantic named the word “actually” as the worst word in the English language, the strongest competing word was “literally” for this dubious distinction.
- The reason “actually” won was because it is a sneaky word to misuse compared to “literally”.
The most regular mistake people make with “literally” is to use it when they mean “figuratively”â€¦ A fine example is a sentence like “He is literally a pain in the butt.” This means that “He” has assumed the position of a hemorrhoid or another ailment in one’s gluteus maximus area, and using the word “figuratively” gives “He” a more accurate designation, that of a bothersome man. The typical use of “actually” is to use it to proper someone in a passive-aggressive mannerâ€¦ When someone says, “Violets are purple.” for example, the haughty response might be, “Actually, it’s more of a purple hue.” designed to denigrate the first person’s sense of color. There are an almost infinite number of ways to misuse “actually” plus the worst offender is John, my Heating as well as Air Conditioning professional. He’ll give me a reminder call when it’s time for my semi-annual cleaning plus maintenance. I almost cringe when he says, “It’s absolutely time for your Heating as well as Air Conditioning tune-up.” When John arrives at my loft he’ll say, “The traffic was absolutely awful plus that is why I am absolutely late.” causing my blood to boil. The only time I like to hear him misspeak is when he is finished with the job plus says, “Your Heating as well as Air Conditioning device absolutely is in pretty fine shape, so I’ll see you in more than five weeks.” When I hear that, it is absolutely like rock n roll to my ears because I absolutely ain’t gonna need no substantial repair bill.