Continuing our look at confusing word pairs, here are a few more to pay attention to. Don’t let these trip you up.
1. Garnish and garner
Garnish—to decorate or embellish; to decorate food.
I never know if you’re supposed to eat the garnish.
Garner—to gather, collect or accumulate; to gather into storage.
We garnered our books and created a library of science fiction and 19th-century literature.
2. Incredible and incredulous
Incredible—difficult or impossible to believe; astonishing.
The number of roadblocks we’ve experienced with this project is incredible.
Incredulous—skeptical; unwilling or unable to believe in something.
If I told you what actually happened, you would be incredulous.
3. Jerry-built and jury rig
Jerry-built—built cheaply and quickly.
Jake jerry-built the treehouse in two days.
Jury rig (can also be jerry rig)—built for temporary use.
Three years later, we’re still using their jury-rigged content management system.