Tuesday, 9 August 2016

If pedantry were an Olympic event...

It riles me that they all abbreviate "Rio de Janeiro" to "Rio". That's like abbreviating "New York" to "New" or "Sao Paolo" to "Sao". "Rio" is the least important part of the name!

As we all well know, "Rio" is the Portuguese/Spanish word for "River" (see also Rio Grande, Rio Tinto etc). Behindthename further informs us:

Its full name is Rio de Janeiro, which means "river of January", so named because the first explorers came to the harbour in January and mistakenly thought it was a river mouth.

Look on a map - Rio de Janeiro does not have a prominent river running through it (like London or Rome), so that makes abbreviating the name to Rio even more annoying.
I couldn't avoid catching a few seconds of live coverage of something or other recently, the commentator solemnly announced that the competitor's time was "... seconds faster than the world record"

Bollocks. His or her time was precisely 0.0 seconds faster than the world record because be definition it is the world record.


View from the Solent said...

It also pisses me off on hearing ".. a new record". It's just a record, the old one has been broken.

Mark Wadsworth said...

Vfts, and that sort of thing.

Bayard said...

VFTS, that's the same sort of laziness that gives us "Rio". It should be "a new record time", but this sort of thing has been going on for years and to a certain extent, the language is as she is spoke.