Imagine you’re driving on the highway.
You’ve rolled down the windows, and a warm breeze is whipping your hair. The radio is blaring, and you’re singing along to one of your favorite songs. When you get to the chorus, though, there’s a line that just doesn’t seem quite right.
“Hold me closer, Tony Danza”? you say to yourself. “Interesting choice of lyrics, Elton John.” (Actually, Bernie Taupin was the lyricist on Elton John’s earlier recordings, but you knew that, right?)
Mondegreens are misheard words or phrases, usually in song lyrics or poems.
They are also just one of many everyday occurrences communicators encounter that you probably did not know had names, such as that feeling you get when you can’t come up with a particular word, or the dot in a lowercase “i.”