It's no wonder children are messed UP—one minute we tell them to speak UP and then we tell them to shut UP.
The Many Uses of the Word Up
The following example shows how a language in the ‘hands’ of lazy people can become utterly and comically confusing.
I never knew one word in the English language that can be a noun, verb, adjective, adverb, and preposition. This two-letter word in English has more meanings than any other two-letter word, and that word is: UP
It is listed in the dictionary as an [adv], [prep], [adj], [n], or [v].
It’s easy to understand UP, meaning toward the sky or at the top of the list, but in the morning we wake UP?
We call UP our friends, brighten UP a room, polish UP the silver, warm UP the leftovers, and clean UP the kitchen. We lock UP the house and fix UP the old car.
At other times, this little word has real special meaning. People stir UP trouble, line UP for tickets, work UP an appetite, and think UP excuses —because we never want to screw UP.
To be dressed is one thing, but to be dressed UP is special. A drain must be opened UP because it is stopped UP. We open UP a store in the morning, but we close it UP at night.
We seem to be pretty mixed UP about UP!
If you are UP to it, you might try building UP a list of the many ways UP is used. It will take UP a lot of your time, but if you don’t give UP, you may wind UP with a hundred or more.
When it threatens to rain, we say it is clouding UP. When the sun comes out, it is clearing UP. When it rains, it soaks UP the earth. When it does not rain, things dry UP.
It’s no wonder children are messed UP—one minute we tell them to speak UP and then we tell them to shut UP.
Oh … one more thing:
What is the first thing you do in the morning and the last thing you do at night?
Did that one crack you UP?
I’ll wrap it UP, for now my time is UP!
That is, until next week’s article contribution pops UP on your computer screen. I may give you heads up!