Ready for a grammar lesson? We're not talking about basic mistakes like screwing up 'their,' 'they're' and 'there.' Instead, we're looking at the phrases and words that can trip up even the best of us.
How many of these do you know, and how many took you by surprise? Share your thoughts in the comments (we swear on an AP Style Guide that we won't judge).
1) Prostrate vs Prostate
This may sound ridiculous, but people seem to get tongue-tied quite often -- and it could be awkward if you screw up around a group of doctors. Prostrate is defined as "lying stretched out on the ground with one's face downward," while prostate is part of a male's reproductive system.
2) "First-come, first-serve"
If you're saying it like it's written above, you're wrong. It's actually "first-come, first-served." The incorrect way indicates that the people who arrive first will be doing the serving -- which restaurants probably won't like.
3) "I could care less"
To convey that there's no way you could be less concerned, the correct phrase is "I couldn't care less." We've pretty much all messed this one up, though it makes sense when you think about it.
Check out these grammar and spelling flubs:
4) "Wet your appetite"
If you spell that phrase like it's shown above, you're basically asking someone to spray you down with water. Did you know that when this phrase appears online, it is wrong 56 percent of the time? The correct terminology is whet, which means to sharpen or stimulate.
5) Waiting with "baited breath"
It's not bait, as in bait a fish. It's actually bated, which is an adjective meaning suspense. Will you get this right in the future? We'll wait with bated breath to find out.
6)"For all intensive purposes"
The correct turn of phrase is "for all intents and purposes" ... though perhaps your intent is intense?
7)"Peaked my interest"
Though peak is the correct spelling for the top of a mountain, it's not right when talking about something that caught your attention. It's actually "piqued my interest," meaning to arouse interest.
One more! Don't let the guy below fool you: Grammar has an 'a,' not an 'e.'