The English language is constantly evolving, both the words we use and the rules
that control the usage of those words. Therefore, it is impossible to ever have a definitive grammar guide, or, if you
will, a Complete Guide of American English. And that’s our excuse.
Word of the Every So Often
(noun) bad handwriting; bad spelling. With such remarkable cacography, Leon felt destined to become a doctor.
And we’re relieved.I’m sure that’s all you’ll need to tell the jury.Here’s the thing:If you need to tell us when you’re not lying, then the only conclusion we can make when you don’t tell us you’re not lying is that you are lying.So, in essence, when you tell
somebody that you’re “not going to lie,” then you admit you are a liar.And if we
know you are a liar (by your own admittance), do you think we’re going to believe you when you say you’re not
lying?Fat chance of that.And invoking the name of God (any god, you choose) to show your honesty
(such as, “I swear to God!I’m
not lying!”) only makes you sound like you’re lying that much more.
This whole honesty thing also includes phrases like “to be honest,”
or even its cousin “to tell the truth.” I’m not going to lie; if you have to tell me you’re
being honest for me to believe you, then you might as well not even try. And that’s the truth.