I've long been intrigued by English words that are often opposites, but can have identical meanings.
- "After our number is called, we can move UP to the front of the line" (or DOWN to the front of the line)
- "Please slow UP -- I can't run as fast as you can" (or slow DOWN)
- If your house burns UP, it really burns DOWN
- Please fill IN the application (or fill OUT)
- The HOTTEST new computer can also be the COOLEST new computer
- SLIM chance and FAT chance mean the same thing
- "He was CITED for bravery." (good) "He was CITED for being drunk on duty." (bad)
- A WISE man and a WISE guy are completely different.
- "Inflammable" can mean a substance that can burn, or can't burn. Sometimes the Latin prefix "in" (also "em" and "im") means pretty much the same thing as the English "in." An inflamed arm is hot and red, i.e, as if it is "in flames." However, the Latin prefix "in" often means "not," as in "incredible," "insufficient," and "inimicable"
- "Lightweight" is good for a portable PC, but bad for someone who wants a job as a professor or sales manager.
And, of course, we can DRIVE on a PARKWAY and PARK on a DRIVEWAY.
(Cars parked in my driveway, before I traded the two Chryslers for a Honda Crosstour last month. I still have the Fiat. The parkway is behind the trees in the background.)