Who have you misled anyone lately?

Lemme see… misle, misled, have/has misled and we’ll throw in the “ing” version just for good measure. Misling. Boy oh boy has it been a long time since I have conjugated a verb. I am channeling Mrs. Loye and Mrs. Pratt big-time right now, including a bra/hanky incident that I was told about by my generation’s version of “my posse don’t do homework” boyz but prob’ly isn’t true.

But wait! What word are we talking about here? Let’s start with the past tense. In this alternative language, the first syllable is “mi”. It is accented and the “i” is the long version of the vowel. The second syllable is “zeld”. The e is actually a schwa (remember those?) and I thought there would be an ASCII version of that character but some quick searching didn’t turn one up. So, clear as mud? In this alternative language, “misled” is the past tense of “misle” (and if you learned phonics like I did with Miss Cox and Mrs. Bishop, you would know that *usually* means a long i sound and a z sound to the s).

Back in the Jurassic Age, The Commander was reading a news article out loud to Grandroobly. Why I do not know because he could certainly read. It was about polly-tishuns though and the word “misled” was used a bunch of times and every time The Comm read “misled” out loud she pronounced it with a long i and a z and a schwa. Like the past tense of “misle” would probably be pronounced if “misle” were a real word.

Somehow or other they both understood the article even with the mispronounced word. Eventually they discovered their error but, being my parents, instead of being embarrassed about it, they went on to invent a whole new conjugation for the non-existent word “misle”, and we were all misling each other left and right for a while there, laughing uproariously every time.

So. Almost every article I read about Mike Flynn’s “resignation” and his “misling” of Vice President Pence on Tuesday (was it Tuesday?) contained multiple instances of the word “misled”. You might guess how I heard the pronunciation of that word in my head every time I read it. I guess if we can have alternative facts, we can also have alternative words. Anyway, these moments are the times that I miss my folks and we’ll talk about the “droven ins” some other day 🐸

One Response to “Who have you misled anyone lately?”

  1. Margaret Says:

    I’m happy for this explanation of the word. My family does the same, both my parents and my late husband and daughters. We have our own inside joke words. 🙂