Wednesday, April 11, 2007

We will assist you momentarily

Whenever I get put on hold with the CVS pharmacy I get told that I will be assisted momentarily. I thought that momentarily was a made up word until a few minutes ago when I looked it up and indeed it is recognized in North America as a word that means "in a moment." I suppose that someone thought that one word replacing three would add to the brevity of the expression. If that's the case then nobody counted the syllables.

On a completely different subject (although not a complete non-sequitur) I can never use the word syllables without thinking of that clip from Black Adder III where Prince George thinks that Black Adder has said "Silly Bulls."

And again straying slightly off subject, I have a technique for checking the spelling of a word using Google. I type (separately) the two different spellings I think the word can take and see which word has more occurrences in the Google data base. Example: "Results 1 - 10 of about 1,150,000 for non-sequitur", and "Results 1 - 10 of about 62,500 for non-sequiter". Of course Google also asks you "did you mean to be an idiot or are you looking for this word…"

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