(By Bill Walsh, Washington Post, 22 August 2013)
2. Used to acknowledge that something is not literally true but is used for emphasis or to express strong feeling.
The word can mean both its original meaning and the opposite, which might seem odd, but so can verbs such as “sanction” and “dust.” Its secondary meaning makes for hyperbole, but so do many instances of “really” and “truly” and “completely” and “totally” that don’t seem to bother anybody. And it’s almost always clear whether the word is being used in its original sense or, as that Google definition puts it, “for emphasis or to express strong feeling.” Still, that Reddit post wasn’t written in a vacuum. The new definition is well established, but so is a strong disdain for it. The usage has become a pop-culture punch line. It’s fodder for comic strips and stand-up comics. Vice President Biden makes headlines with his fondness for it. The usage fills a chapter of my new book, “Yes, I Could Care Less: How to Be a Language Snob Without Being a Jerk.” However persuasive the historical and linguistic justifications, there’s something uniquely absurd about using the one word that most clearly means “I am not making this up” when you are, in fact, making something up.
sorry about last night
next time we can order little caesars
sorry about last night.
next time we can order little caesars.