Remember a few years ago how reporters were making fun of President Bush for the way he pronounced the word “nuclear”? Well, at least he didn’t say a word that meant something completely different, like this reporter covering President Bush’s visit to a battery factory:
During his visit to Johnson Controls’ new hybrid battery laboratory, Bush checked out two Ford Escapes – one with a nickel-metal-hybrid battery, the kind that powers most hybrid-electric vehicles, and one with a lithium-ion battery, which Johnson Controls believes are the wave of the future.
Umm….. folks, there’s no such thing as a “nickel-metal-hybrid” battery. I’m pretty sure he meant “nickel metal-hydride,” which is the kind of battery used in today’s hybrid cars.
Unlike “nuclear” and “nuculear” which are different pronunciations of the same word even though one is arguably incorrect, “hybrid” and “hydride” are completely different words.
“Hybrid” means “something having two kinds of components that produce the same or similar results.” A “Hydride” is a type of ligand with a metal-hydrogen bond. A “hybrid” has as much to do with a “hydride” as a camel has to do with a toenail.
Of course, don’t expect the so-called “Bushism” ridicule to stop, and don’t expect anybody to start making fun of this reporter for his malapropism. Stupid mistakes only count if they’re made by a Republican.