Loose / Lose  It would appear that there is a gargantuan, international conspiracy afoot, a conspiracy pursuing, with ruthless efficiency, the goal of causing a major blood vessel in my head to EXPLODE! Some examples of my latest bugbear, randomly grabbed from Twitter [emphasis mine]:

jobrosupdates_n Joe admitted he was the first of his 3 brothers loosing his virginity and that he will not tell the name of the girl  

ZodiacFacts #ZodiacFacts A #Libra rarely loose their temper, but the two or three times in their lives that they do, everyone remembers.

celseyy okay, why am i loosing LOADS of followers?:(

Kagirl2014 Whats it mean when im loosing clumps of hair? ugh! more problems.

Is it just me? Because this one drives me c-r-a-z-y-! Are we sitting comfortably?
Loose – rhymes with goose, moose and juice. Loose is almost always used as an adjective:
  • He wore comfortable, loose-fitting clothing to his Pilates class.
  • Loose lips sink ships.
  • She pulled the scrunchie out of her hair and shook it loose.
  • “Daddy, I have a loose tooth!”
Lose – rhymes with booze, cruise and glues. Lose is a verb:
  • I love to lose myself in the music.
  • Did you lose some followers on Twitter today?
  • If he does that again, I’m going to lose it!
Just to confuse us all, Loose can be used as a verb, but this is rare and usually in a somewhat archaic sentence form:
  • Robin Hood loosed an arrow at the Sheriff of Nottingham’s head.
I appreciate that once again, this is a phonetic problem. The double O in “loose” looks like it should be pronounced “ooooooo” as in “loooooooze.” But it isn’t, so learn the difference.
Pop Quiz – there are two CVs from people of similar background, education, training and experience and one slot left on the shortlist. One of the CVs is letter-perfect and the other has three errors in it. Assume that the decision-maker is remotely literate. (a) Which CV is going in the bin? (b) Why is it that the only people who have a problem with the answer to question (a) are careless, sloppy writers?
I have seen CV after CV dumped for mistakes like this and there are no two ways about it – people who can spell, who have taken the time and trouble to learn off all the myriad rules and exceptions in the English language; they are very harsh and judgemental people. I know, I’m one of them. While  I will admit that this stuff irritates me at some basal level, I don’t dump your CV with any sense of pleasure, malice or superiority. Please believe me when I tell you that I have no feelings whatsoever about your CV … or you. When I am in the hiring chair, it’s just a numbers game. I have too many CVs on the pile and carelessness/sloppiness like this makes my job of whittling down the pile just a little easier.
SUMMARY: If it is a ‘doing’ word in your sentence, you almost should almost always be spelling it L-O-S-E. If it’s a ‘describing’ word in your sentence, then it’s almost always going to be L-O-O-S-E. (rhymes with Goose, Juice, Moose, Spruce, Noose, Truce, Mousse, Recluse …)
Be altruistic about this and save an old curmudgeon from an aneurysm; or be selfish about this and stop yourself from looking like a sub-literate, incompetent clown. Either way, get it right.
Up with this I will not put!

Vizzini: “He didn’t fall? In-con-ceiv-able!”
Inigo: “You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means.”

PS: Since I started writing this post (about 20 minutes ago), there have been 217 tweets with the word “loosing” in them – and in every single one of them the usage was incorrect. UPDATE: Crimes Against English very kindly notified me of the excellent little website – loseloose.com – so it’s not just me then …