Get Wack(er)ed Out with Us!
April 11, 2013
#MediaMonday – The I Love Bob Costas Edition
April 15, 2013

Yesterday, my world was shattered when Abbie noticed I used the phrase “the whole kitten caboodle” in a blog post. At first, I thought she – a clear dog person – was just giving me – a clear kitty person – a hard time, as so many of you dog lovers do. (Ahem!).

But, apparently the phrase really is “the whole kit and caboodle.” It is thought to be of British descent from hundreds of years ago when soldiers used “kit bags.”

This got us to talking about the infamous “for all intensive purposes.” Yeah, yeah, I know – it’s “for all intents and purposes.” But I didn’t know it until I was about 28 years old! In fact, I even corrected people (with the “intensive”) when I would see them write it as “intense and purposes” for years.

So, I’ve gotta ask – am I alone in using a beloved phrase (or two) over and over and over for years, only to find out it is totally wrong?

I think – at least hope – not! So, let’s hear yours…what phrase did you say wrong for years? I’ve got some money that at least a few of you say “hunger pains” rather than “hunger pangs” or perhaps “nip it in the butt” instead of “nip it in the bud.”

Comment away!


Alison Bailin
Alison Bailin
Senior Account Executive Alison has a lot to say…about pretty much everything...all the time. From the current state of public relations to the social media impact on Shark Week to crisis communications in the sports world, Alison’s blogs are focused on “amusing through her PR musings,” and then some. Check out Alison's full bio


  1. I’ve heard Greg Shulte, radio voice of the Arizona Diamondbacks, use the phrase “Jolly on the spot.” I always thought it was Johnny who was there…

  2. Alison Bailin says:

    From Ed Baker on Facebook: I saw “case and point” (it should be “case in point”) all the time as editor. A lot of writers also thought they had peaked their reader’s interest, when in fact they piqued it. Likewise, they and their friends did not make an awesome click (if they did, they’d be weirdos – and noisy ones at that), but some of them may have made an awesome clique.

  3. Alison Bailin says:

    From barb Maack on Facebook: I said “whole nother thing” until my mom asked me how I would spell that phrase.

  4. Katie says:

    I am quite embarrassed of this one.

    In high school I was talking to a friend and used the phrase “take for granite.” At the time I didn’t know that I was saying it completely wrong. A friend corrected me saying it’s “granted not granite.”

  5. Alison Bailin says:

    From Megan Rose on Facebook: I always cringe when people use “weary” instead of “wary” I think people get confused because “leary” is also appropriate. My kids always say things incorrectly and it is so hard to correct because 1) they have no reference point for the right word and 2) it is cuter when they say it wrong. My favorite is “my heart is beeping”

  6. Alison Bailin says:

    From Lynette Carrington on Facebook: I haven’t done it personally, but my two pet peeves in this department are “whole nother” and “I could care less”. ARGH!!!!! Drives me bananas.

  7. Alison Bailin says:

    From Blair Kahora Cardinal on Facebook: Oh my gosh, this is my Cryptonite! For starters—Make ends meat (meet) and Play it by year (ear). Took me well into adulthood to realize my mistakes, although my versions do actually make sense if you think about it!

  8. Alison Bailin says:

    From Geri Koeppel on Facebook: In this same vein, someone I know thought it was a “doggy dog world” instead of “dog eat dog world”!

  9. Alison Bailin says:

    From Lisa Van Loo Nicita on Facebook: Just thought of one. I used to think “up and at ’em” was ‘Up and Adam” as in a proper noun. Always wondered who Adam was.

  10. Alison Bailin says:

    From Shana Schwarz on Facebook: Not one I do, but it bugs me when people say they have hunger pains. They are hunger pangs.

  11. Alison Bailin says:

    From Kristen Seward on Twitter: @AbbieF @HMA_PR @abailin For a long time, I thought it was “lack toast and tolerant” :o)

  12. Alison Bailin says:

    More fun submissions from Facebook link to blog:

    Lisa Van Loo Nicita Just thought of one. I used to think “up and at ’em” was ‘Up and Adam” as in a proper noun. Always wondered who Adam was.

    Kimberly Higgins Searles I used to think “awallago” was how you spell “a while ago” when I was a kid.

    Shay Moser I’m ashamed: …one nation, under God, “individual,” instead of “indivisible…”

    Glenn Swain I once wrote “physical year” instead of fiscal year. So, we’ve all been there. Forgiven!!

    Dianne Elizabeth Price Love me some kitten caboodle, Allison! Inaccurate, but so darn cute. I think it’s the springboard to yet another blog post for you!

    Lynette Carrington Definitely Dianne! There’s lots of fuel for her right here in this thread.

    Paula Hubbs Cohen As a kid, my sister thought that “Elay” was a different city from “Los Angeles” —

  13. Leslie Tweetom says:

    This made me laugh out loud! If we turn to song lyrics, I thought “Smoke on the Water” was “slow movin’ warfare,” and that was one of many!

  14. Alison Bailin says:

    More great stuff from Facebook link to this blog:

    Bill Andres: When I was a kid, I thought there was a product called “Nunnier Beeswax.” My sister was always going to the store for it.

    Paula Hubbs Cohen: And what is a caboodle, anyway?

    Alison Bailin Batz To me (and any girl in the 80s) – this is a caboodle!

    Kate Crowley: I have spelled grateful as “greatful” yea. Guilty.

    Tiffany Di Giacinto: I still have two Caboodles.

    Peter Madrid: And it’s “champing at the bit” …. don’t get me started!

    Alison Bailin Batz: Tiffany – can I put a kitten in one, thereby making the whole “kitten caboodle!”

  15. Mark Roden says:

    The single word misuse that droves me crazy is “irregardless”, but the phrase I misused a lot in younger years was “Katy by the door”; having gotten a C- (barely) in literature, I really didn’t know trouble was lurking, and it didn’t help that I learned about the phrase from watching sports on TV, since most sports journalists fail to “aks” many questions before they determine the outcome would have been the same – “irregardless” of the final score.

  16. Rank and file vs. Rankin File. I never knew who Rankin was.

  17. Scott Hanson says:

    Just heard this one from a prominent radio personality: “fount” of knowledge. Too bad for the font.

  18. Abbie S. Fink says:

    “For all intesive purposes” is really “for all intents and purposes!”

  19. Peter Madrid says:

    My biggest pet peeve is: “Chomping at the bit.” It is actually “Champing at the bit.” Nuff said!

  20. KG says:

    Today I saw “from the gecko” instead of “from the get-go”

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