Sunday, May 31, 2009

Commonly misused/misspelled words and phrases (Part 85)

Sorry it's been so long since the last installment. But here are some more words to ponder:

Icebox vs. Refrigerator
Wrong: Let me get a cold one out of the ice box.
: Let me get a cold one out of the refrigerator.

Once upon a time, food was kept cold by storing in cabinets chilled by blocks of ice. These iceboxes were gradually replaced by electric refrigerators, but some people still cling to the old, now obsolete, term.

Tinfoil vs. Aluminum foil

Wrong: Timmy, please cover the casserole with tinfoil.

Right: Timmy, please cover the casserole with aluminum foil.

Tinfoil was once used to wrap food, but imparted a tinny taste to it. This unfortunate side effect, along with the higher cost, caused it to be replaced for that use not long after the first aluminum foil plant opened in 1910 in Kreuzlingen, Switzerland. Tin foil still has other uses in industry, but not as a food wrapper.

More next time. Ciao!


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