by ear » by year

Chiefly in:   play it by year

Classification: English

Spotted in the wild:

  • today there isn’t a new posting on her site, which i take for a good thing, and she wasn’t crying at lunch. i think i’ll play it by year. (link)
  • Noel our director wants me to start racing pursuit to give it a go this year in LA at the worlds. I am going to play it by year and see how it goes but truly my heart is out on the open roads. (link)
  • With no skiing experience, ski school is definitely a good choice for the kids (at least one day for sure). I’d bet that the older kids will be ready to charge off on their own after 1 day of school and may not need a second day, but play it by year. (link)
  • I really don’t have anything that I am just aching to be, so I am just playing it by year, or ten. (link)

Analyzed or reported by:

For speakers who don’t start _ear_ (in _by ear_) with a glottal stop, the eggcorn and the original are homophones. In several of the occurrences, a (more or less vaguely) temporal interpretation of the idiom is discernible.

| link | entered by Chris Waigl, 2005/07/05 |


  1. 1

    Commentary by charolastra , 2006/06/27 at 7:15 pm

    I thought this was the correct version until I was maybe ten. But it’s amazing that a literate person could make it to adulthood and still think this was correct.

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