Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Pet Peeve of the Day: I Could Not Care Less

As an example of people saying the opposite of what they mean, consider the ever-popular phrase, “I could care less...” Either the author has left out a phrase beginning with “but”, or he or she has written a lie. You can imagine, however, the cheery attitudes I uncover when I respond to such a sentence with, “Liar.” For some reason, my co-workers do not care for this response.

In the interests of purging the bile that rises when I hear this phrase, and preserving the generally good relationships I enjoy with my co-workers, I am posting this as fair warning. If you really could not care less that Bob has a new shirt, then say so. If you could care less, then simply express your interest and stop attempting to confuse and frustrate people. Should you be stretching for uber-sarcasm, finish your thought and say, “I could care less about Bob's new shirt, but that would require more effort than it's worth.” Ouch!