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Pedants' corner

What would you call them?

(29 Posts)
Jane10 Thu 05-Jan-17 13:31:26

I was becoming increasingly ratty today as I read the paper- 'a male was found dead at a residential property. Mr X resided alone'.
Translates as ' a man was found dead in his home. He lived alone'.
We used to have to do exercises at school 50+ years ago avoiding language like that.
To top it off, an advertisement on the opposite page was for 'bath fillers' ( aka taps!)

Ana Thu 05-Jan-17 13:33:45

'Door furniture' aways makes me laugh! grin

kittylester Thu 05-Jan-17 13:36:39

FGS!! Not you two Jane and Ana!

Ana Thu 05-Jan-17 13:37:42


Jane10 Thu 05-Jan-17 13:39:48

Come on, calling taps bath fillers is just daft! Door furniture is ridiculous too.

Ana Thu 05-Jan-17 14:10:38

Not sure what we've said to warrant a FGS, but never mind...

thatbags Thu 05-Jan-17 14:56:49

There is a Plain English Society is there not?

I think the kind of linguistic exercise your speak of, jane10, is a good idea.

Been discussing essay writing with Minibags recently. She agonises over how to put stuff. My advice is "as straightforwardly as possible" so, if one fears failure one can write this sentence: "I fear failure" and take it from there. No-one will misunderstand what you're talking about!

thatbags Thu 05-Jan-17 14:58:16

Plain English Campaign.

thatbags Thu 05-Jan-17 15:00:29

Re bath fillers, surely bath fillers are people. People use taps (or hoses or buckets, etc) to fill baths.

thatbags Thu 05-Jan-17 15:01:31

kitty, just a bit of piss-taking. It is on my part anyhow.

Jane10 Thu 05-Jan-17 15:43:56

Absolutely. KISS all the way (Keep It Simple Stupid!)

kittylester Thu 05-Jan-17 17:14:26

Sorry, I thought my ' not you two' comment made it plain that the 'FGS' was for the post not the posters!! flowers

Ana Thu 05-Jan-17 17:16:35

Oh dear, misunderstandings all round - sorry kitty, thought it wasn't in character! smile

kittylester Thu 05-Jan-17 17:24:29


grandMattie Thu 05-Jan-17 17:27:26

How I agree - but you see there also is "street furniture" aka lamps posts, railings, bollards, etc. so why not door furniture? confused
DH and I keep tally of cliches used by politicians and others on the radio. It is great fun! grin

Ana Thu 05-Jan-17 17:30:16

Well at least 'street furniture' is on the ground...grin

Wheniwasyourage Thu 05-Jan-17 18:32:04

It seems to be often in statements attributed to the police where people are described as 'a male' or 'a female'. It gets right up my nose too, Jane10. Why on earth not say "a man", 'a woman', 'a youth', 'a young woman' or whatever is necessary?

Perhaps if I put my furniture out in the street, someone else would dust it... hmm

MissAdventure Fri 13-Jan-17 23:21:47

I dislike it when people in banks, etc ask me to "put your signature there for me, please."
Its the "for me" bit that slightly annoys, its a bit patronising, I think. (Quietly, to myself)

janeainsworth Sat 14-Jan-17 02:49:36

Something I hear frequently on Radio 4 of all places, is that something 'took place'. This is guaranteed to make me grind my teeth as it is usually referring to something tragic, like a mass shooting or a tsunami or cyclists getting mown down by careless motorists.
Accidents and tragedies don't 'take place'. They happen or occur.
Only ceremonies like weddings or funerals 'take place'.

Grannyknot Sat 14-Jan-17 08:03:02

I'm all for speaking plainly. I'm on a local committee and one of the other members wrote to me recently in what I call public-sector speak:

"It is proving very difficult for me to rearrange my schedule to be able to attend on XXX although I can attend on XXX much more easily".

I ranted to husband that it should be: "I'm sorry I can't make the XX, but I'm available on the XX".

At the next meeting I realised she speaks as she writes and it annoyed me so much, I resigned from the committee smile. I didn't say why of course.

vampirequeen Sat 14-Jan-17 08:13:55

One of my SIL's is an independent transparent wall technician.

He's a self employed window cleaner grin

Elrel Sat 14-Jan-17 16:01:34

I'm wondering whether 'door furniture' is from Victorian times. There is a local museum 'The Coffin Works' which actually produced not coffins but coffin furniture. Fascinating!

GrannySmiffy01 Tue 07-Feb-17 17:45:40

Surely 'door furniture' describes a whole range of objects that one could buy, for example, at a DIY store? In the 'door furniture' section, one would expect to find: knobs, knockers, key holes, handles, thumb latches, escutcheons, security chains and fingers plates. I hate jargon in the wrong place, or the random formation of unnecessary 'new' words. But in this case, the use of the generic term 'door furniture' seems entirely appropriate. What else could this section in a DIY store be called? 'Door stuff'?

Ana Tue 07-Feb-17 17:50:49

I'd be inclined to call them 'door fittings' as 'furiture' makes me think of tables and chairs - but each to their own! grin

Ana Tue 07-Feb-17 17:51:13