A hysterical interview with comedian Michael McIntyre on The Jonathan Ross Show prompted me to write about tautology – the use of unnecessary words. Michael was highlighting, in his own inimitable style, how Americans feel the need to simplify perfectly adequate English words. (Watch the clip here!)
To demonstrate, Michael cited examples including sidewalk (pavement), trash can (bin) and his personal favourite, horseback riding (horse-riding). It was extremely funny but he makes a serious point: many of us (and I include myself here) use unnecessary words in everyday life.