Wednesday, October 06, 2004

The endlessly useful "sic" needs a sibling. We - maybe just "I" - need something akin to "sic" to indicate that the writer knows something most readers do not and that despite possible appearances an error has not been made. Example:

Lefty's dimwit cat was sitting on the chaise longue [insert new "sic" variety here] again and left kibbly crumbs all over it.

'Cause it's not chaise lounge, of course, but in such cases, when one does the good and right and proper and decent thing, most readers will incorrectly believe an error has been made. And for God's sake these things keep people like me up at night. The appearance of a usage slip is far more intolerable than accusations of pedantry or outright jackasshood can ever be. So what shall we use, then, bores like us? At the moment I have no potential solutions better than:

And you know that all of his naysayers are just champing [sic all y'all] at the bit to debate him face to face.

(I'm working on a pronunciation that, when slurred, sounds faintly like Latin.)


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