SIR: Regarding your statement that it is not wrong to pronounce a zero "oh," there may not be a law against it but it is wrong! Please tell me what dictionary you used to indicate the letter "O" means zero. - Audrey J.
ANSWER: This request comes from one of the gentler letters among the many rebuking me for saying a zero may be pronounced "oh." I have been told that doing so "can have tragic consequences," that it can do terrible things to telephones and computers, that I should "simply reference a telephone key pad" to learn the error of my ways, and so on. Gee whiz.In answer to Audrey J., the first three dictionaries I consulted - Merriam Webster, New World and American Heritage - all listed "zero" as one of the definitions of the letter "O." The American Heritage went further and provided a usage example. Its third definition of "O" said: "a zero: a phone number with three O's."
SIR: I often hear people use the combination "might could," as in "I might could go." I cringe every time I hear it. How can the words be used together? - Pat G.
ANSWER: Only by misusing the language. There's nothing wrong with saying, "I might go" or "I could go," but putting the two together simply won't do.