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May 26, 2007
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A few years too late to this comment thread, but here's my post anyway...
This phrase didn't annoy me until tech support migrated to India and became chat sessions and email support. Now everyone seems to throw it around. They didn't used to, back when we had regular Americans on the support lines. (Ha! I sound like an old man. "Back in my day...")
I now immediately assume that the person saying it ain't from around here (except in the aforementioned legal/law enforcement scenarios).
BTW, the comment that prompted this post... @Sara (re: till vs 'til), I thought the same way till I actually looked it up. Please be advised that dictionary.com's usage info on "till" states:
TILL and UNTIL are both old in the language and are interchangeable as both prepositions and conjunctions: It rained till (or until ) nearly midnight. The savannah remained brown and lifeless until (or till ) the rains began. TILL is not a shortened form of UNTIL and is not spelled 'TILL. 'TIL is usually considered a spelling error, though widely used in advertising: Open 'til ten.
Sweet, I'm gonna keep this comment thread alive with my little rant. The problem obviously stems from the period being used for abbreviations as well as a full stop. (yeah, ok, I'm American, but "period" has too many meanings already!) The only logical reason for two spaces after a period is for legibility. Thus, the full stop character should be a different character, rendered with spacing after it in the font itself. The abbreviation indicator ("suspension mark", as I learned from Wikipedia) and mathematical period and dot characters (and any others) should remain a ".". (or is that ".."? Stupid American quotation mark rules.) We should implement this when we convert to metric like the rest of the world. (Yeah, I know, we in general are too stupid to learn ourselves metric.) And off-topically, myth or not, I was taught and believe in the statistics that indicate that most dyslexia is caused by our horrible educational system that forces children to read at too early an age. I have sympathy for all who have been damaged by our educational system, and that is why I propose to go metric and change the full stop into its own character. The Asians may not be able to drive, but they have little hollow circles for full stops. Hey, I'm not saying it'll be easy. And I'm also not saying that I won't balk at replacing our sentence-ender with a different character. But I'm for metric. And against induced dyslexia and/or poor reading skills. That's how I roll.
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