A character in the book I am reading just cut a 'slither' of cake. WTF???

(46 Posts)

I'm seeing this everywhere. Has the word sliver just disappeared?

How on earth could a slither of cake possibly ever make sense? It's making me feel all cross.

SoupDragon Thu 13-Jun-13 12:45:08

Perhaps it was cut in the shape of a snake.

Yettish Thu 13-Jun-13 12:47:10

This drives me fucking demented.

I've noticed the sliver/slither confusion extending to slaver/slather in recent years. sad

treaclesoda Thu 13-Jun-13 12:47:17

I agree, I hate this word too. I've just checked an online dictionary and the old fashioned Oxford Concise dictionary and neither of them recognise the word slither as being a slice of something.

SimoneDeBeaver Thu 13-Jun-13 12:47:40

No, copyeditor and proofreader were rushed or asleep.

treaclesoda Thu 13-Jun-13 12:48:00

That is, I hate the word in this context. As far as I know, slither and sliver are not interchangeable.

Yettish Thu 13-Jun-13 12:48:29

'Slither' is a perfectly good word. A verb. 'Sliver' is a totally different word. A noun.

treaclesoda Thu 13-Jun-13 12:49:50

ooh, I just stumbled across this in active conversations and posted, and have only just realised that I am in pedants corner. I feel I have found my natural home!

Yettish Thu 13-Jun-13 12:49:51

treacle, they are two different words. Many people imagine 'slither' is a more educated way of pronouncing 'sliver'. because they are fucking idiots

treaclesoda Thu 13-Jun-13 12:51:15

grin I was pretty sure, as sure as I could possibly be, that they were two totally different words, but I felt the need to write 'as far as I know' because I have been ripped to shreds on MN so many times in the past and told that I am talking through my arse wink.

Yettish Thu 13-Jun-13 12:51:47

Haha! Mumsnet at its finest! x

Oh good, not just me then! It just so clearly makes NO SENSE.

Yettish I bet that's exactly what it is; that hadn't occurred to me!

Treacle, stay in Pedant's Corner - we promise not to comment on your arse wink.

StUmbrageinSkelt Thu 13-Jun-13 12:56:58

DH says this.

It makes me all ragey.

What book was it?

burberryqueen Thu 13-Jun-13 12:58:01

omg i would need to stab someone if i actually read this in a book

A newish novel I picked up in the library - 'Homecoming' I think. Not loving it and the whole 'slither' debacle isn't helping!

FrustratedSycamoresRocks Thu 13-Jun-13 14:40:02

Hissssss <not helpful>

Cooroo Thu 20-Jun-13 13:19:04

SimoneDeBeaver - proofreader has probably been made redundant because everyone thinks they can get by without one these days.

Really? Why?

SimoneDeBeaver Mon 24-Jun-13 12:54:34

Well, I don't know any big publishers who still employ proofreaders full-time. They've all used freelancers for years.

But as so many books are now cheaper than magazines to buy/download, the margins must be more and more squeezed, and so I suppose the pressure is on to cut corners.

However, I would bet good money in this case that it was just missed.

Moominsarehippos Mon 24-Jun-13 12:59:02

I rather like the idea of a slither of cake.

They missed it TWICE! To be honest there is a stupid amount of cake in this book considering it's about sheep farming hmm

PipkinsPal Mon 24-Jun-13 14:25:08

I love my Kindle but I get extremely apoplectic at the spelling errors and the use of would of etc. It seems there are no professional proof readers anymore sad.

happyreindeer Mon 24-Jun-13 14:39:46

I say slither of cake quite often.

ladyMaryQuiteContrary Mon 24-Jun-13 14:42:28

Slither? Seriously? Wrong word. The character should eat the whole of the cake, sod the others.

DON'T! I had a barbecue on Saturday and 3 separate people asked for a slither of cake. I had been drinking. I THINK I managed to keep it on the right side of jokey blush.

I wonder whether they'll come to the next one.

TheUnstoppableWindmill Mon 24-Jun-13 15:53:11

Oh God, that's horrible! You MUST correct these people: they NEED to know! <Dissolves in a mush of caring too much about language...>

BobblyGussets Mon 24-Jun-13 15:59:30

I always thought people meant it as a joke confused, i.e., they knew "sliver" was the correct word but used "slither" intentionally for comedic effect. Perhaps I have too high an opinion of people.
If it makes you feel better, I spotted a mistake in a Salman Rushdie novel last week.

CambridgeBlue Mon 24-Jun-13 16:04:54

How irritating! Does anyone else get unreasonably enraged by people confusing peak and peek? I'm always seeing it on blogs - 'have a peak at our latest creation' etc. Really winds me up!

Waferthinmint Mon 24-Jun-13 16:07:33

Surely when discussing cake the correct word would be 'wedge', doorstop, chunk . . . brew

K8Middleton Mon 24-Jun-13 16:09:51

Read better books.

eddiemairswife Mon 24-Jun-13 16:12:17

What about 'tow the line'?

SimoneDeBeaver Mon 24-Jun-13 17:05:38

ahem, Pipkins there certainly are professional proofreaders around <sharpens pencils>

Simone, how do you get into proofreading? I've recently left English teaching and just finished a stint of GCSE marking which I enjoyed more than I thought I was going to.

Oh and K8, quite right, grabbed it in the library, should have known better.
Waferthin yep, I was almost as offended by the paltry amount of cake being consumed as I was by the butchering of the English language!

Alibabaandthe40nappies Mon 24-Jun-13 17:25:34

My grandma used to say this. It makes me smile and angry by turns for that reason.

The other thing that I've noticed people saying is 'oh I'm really weary of him/her', when they mean 'wary'.

ShowOfHands Mon 24-Jun-13 17:32:30

I see wonder/wander confused on here a lot too.

Waferthinmint Mon 24-Jun-13 18:59:13

Pedants, can you believe this has been done before! I thought it rang/rung a bell


RenterNomad Mon 24-Jun-13 19:10:07

This is depressing. sad

It's fine - that was from 2007. Now we have a whole new generation of MNers to bore educate.

Cambridge I get the rage about misuse of 'peak', peek' and 'pique'!!

Also, 'sliver' vs 'slither'. And 'cue' vs 'queue'.

And many, many more.

I've come home.

Nooo, I missed out a single quotation mark before the word peek. And I actually shouldn't have used a single quotation mark, it should have been a double.

I'm going to hang my head in shame in the corner now....

I have a friend who refused to believe the existence of the word 'brusque'. She thought it was just that people couldn't spell 'brisk'.

I can see 'sliver' going the same way.

Wasn't it the title of a film? Quite a rude one, I seem to recall. May have starred Sharon Stone.

Three Yes, it's the title of a film. I think Alec Baldwin is in it, along with Sharon Stone.

SimoneDeBeaver Fri 28-Jun-13 12:25:52

Becca - no need to use double quotes smile. You can just choose whether you want to use single or double, then you use the other if there are quotes within speech or quotes (clear? grin)

IHeart I'm afraid I'm not much help with getting into proofreading, because it's always been part of my job in one way or another since leaving university, so I just relied on old colleagues when I went freelance.

pigsDOfly Sat 29-Jun-13 23:44:07

I have been seeing this slither thing in books for some time now and it drives me up the wall. I actually stopped reading one book because it occurred so many times, along with several similar howlers, that I just lost patience with it.

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