Professional Style

Safe-deposit box

December 2013
Spot the Error

As executor of his mother’s estate, John was the first to look through the contents of her safety deposit box.

Bankers everywhere cringe at the phrase safety deposit box. And let me tell you, there’s a lot of cringing going on. People say it all the time. The proper term is safe-deposit box.

The confusion is understandable. T’s and D’s are formed the same way in the mouth. The only difference being that D’s are voiced and T’s are not. So “safe-de… ” can sometimes sound like “safety.” As for the rest of the phrase, I can’t explain the weirdness that happens there; it’s beyond my comprehension.

So, do your banker a favor and lock this lesson away in your brain’s safe-deposit box.

~ Thank you to my banker buddy Bill E. for the topic suggestion.

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