29 Common Phrases You'll Be Surprised To Know You're Saying Wrong

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Let’s just play it by year… Oops, I mean play it by ear.

“Play it by year” vs. “Play it by ear.”

"Play it by year" vs. "Play it by ear."

You obviously weren't using your ears when they invented this phrase. Play it by ear means to improvise or deal with a situation as it plays out.

Correct term: “Play it by ear.”

Sony Pictures

“Old wise tale” vs. “Old wives’ tale.”

"Old wise tale" vs. "Old wives' tale."

A wise tale is sometimes wrong, but an old wives' tale is always is an old story that is based more on legend than fact.

Correct term: “Old wives' tale.”


“It’s a doggy-dog world” vs. “It’s a dog-eat-dog world.”

"It's a doggy-dog world" vs. "It's a dog-eat-dog world."

No, Snoop Dogg didn't coin this phrase, which describes merciless competition.

Correct term: “Dog-eat-dog world.”

Columbia Pictures

“I could care less” vs. “I couldn’t care less.”

"I could care less" vs. "I couldn't care less."

The wrong version defeats the purpose of the correct phrase, meaning you have no fucks to give.

Correct term: “I couldn't care less.”


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