One of them is the way people say they will ‘meet with’ someone else. To my mind, you might ‘meet with’ an accident or misfortune, but if all you’re doing is getting together for a coffee, you simply ‘meet’ them.
I suspect it was politicians that started the ‘meet with’ fad thinking that it somehow softened the subject of the meeting. Either that or some HR manager somewhere who wanted to sound caring while laying people off.
The grammar websites are split on whether one is more correct than the other, or even if they have nuanced differences in meaning. The BBC says that to ‘meet with’ has more formal connotations, that you are meeting to discuss something specific, rather than just a chance encounter.
It still gets on my nerves, but I suppose I will just have to accept that the language changes. To illustrate this, The Uxbridge English Dictionary arrived in the post today and here are a few of my favourite old words and their new definitions:
Assassination – an arrangement to meet a donkey.
Bidet – two days before D-Day.
Equip – an unasked for joke off the internet.
Hither – a snake with a hair-lip.
Lackadaisical – short of one flower.
Pre-Raphaelite – one who leaves before the raffle.
Telepathy – when you can’t be bothered to change tv channels.
Xenophobia – fear of Buddhists.
You can find more definitions, or suggest your own, on The Uxbridge English Dictionary website. Or if you’re wondering what on earth this is all about, below if a short clip from I’m Sorry I Haven’t A Clue for you to meet with which will probably fail to explain all.