Daily Archives: September 7, 2014

Get, Gat, Got… Outta Here!

Recently, I have acquired a pet peeve for the word ‘get’ and its close relatives, ‘gat’, ‘got’ and ‘gotten’.

Wait a minute, ‘gat’? I just threw ‘gat’ in there jokingly, but after a little research, discovered that ‘gat’ is an archaic form of the past tense of ‘get’. Ok, “I gat it now!”

Seriously, ‘get’ is such a generic word, replacing a diverse selection of real, descriptive words! I care not to count how many times in a single day I hear, “I gotta go…,” which is a worse infraction than using the word ‘got’ alone, because it’s been contracted and incorrect in its tense! Why not say, “I have to go…,” or, “I must go…” Yes, ‘gotta’ has to go… far, far away!

GetGatGotBut back to ‘get’ and ‘got’, I’m not paying any attention to ‘gat’ because I cannot remember a time when I had ever heard anyone use that word, probably because it is an archaic form and unless I run into someone time travelling from the Victorian ages, I will not hear it. However, I think ‘get’, in informal speech, as in, “Get out of here!” is acceptable because it is being used as an informal command, or, “I get it, I get it,” although the nuns in the Catholic school where I learned the basics and beyond of proper grammar, would likely disagree with me.

So why do I find this bothersome? Because it is a sign of the time, a time when our very language is shriveling and being replaced with lazy, one-size-fits-all verbs and a whole new world composed of acronyms is creating a separate language not confined to “texters”.

I for one am boycotting the ‘get’ family by paying closer attention to my every day vocabulary and playing vocabulary games, one of which I really enjoy can be found at vocabulary.com and it is free!

How you feed and maintain your language center?
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