Word Confusion: “Irregardless, I Could Care Less”

Dear Copy Bitch: My girlfriend says that when I say something like “Irregardless of what you think, I’m really a sensitive guy,” that I’m wrong and the word is “regardless.” Who’s right?

—Betrothed in Sioux City

Answer: Dear Betrothed…in this case, your girlfriend is right, at least regarding the word “irregardless” (Madame Copy Bitch makes no claim about your sensitivity one way or the other). Use “regardless.”

Here’s another phrase that confuses many: “could care less” vs. “couldn’t care less.” The proper use is “couldn’t care less.” For example, “I couldn’t care less about George’s supposed ‘other’ woman.”

UPDATED IN 2017: I learned something new. “Irregardless” IS a word. But it probably doesn’t mean what you think. And you probably shouldn’t use it. Here’s the explanation.

2 replies
  1. soloportfolio
    soloportfolio says:

    OK… this is a topic I can really get going about. There are so many wacky words people make up. My favorite: “supposably,” which I hear ALL THE TIME. Just within this last week I heard two new made-up words: “lamblasted” (instead of lambasted) and “priorate” (instead of prioritize).

    Seriously. What is up with that? And what is up with you writing blog entries at 12pm?? Do you set them to auto-send or are you actually up this late every night?

    Reply
  2. robynbradley
    robynbradley says:

    Ha! I kinda like “lamblasted.” 🙂 For me, it depends on the purpose of the “new” word. If it’s merely a mistake (like the ones you point out and the ones in my post), then no good. But I’m known for “verbing” nouns: “I flipflopped down the deck to where George was tanning himself.” And I do use “impact” as a verb (which drives some of my grammar purist friends nutty). And I’m always up for “grabbing coffee.” 🙂

    The date and time got screwed up on this post due to the change in the clocks…I didn’t realize until after I hit “publish” that I had to manually update the time…I wrote the post at 7:30 p.m., but it had it show up as midnight on 11/3. Should be fixed now. I think the feedburner email updates always go out at the end of the day, regardless of when I create the posts. Thanks for commenting!

    Reply

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