My daughter introduced me to one of her favorite webcomics, and it’s become one of mine. Allie Brosh created the delightful blog (and subsequent book) called “Hyperbole and a Half.” It’s entertaining, if not easy to describe. Let’s just say that it’s a look at the absurdity of the world through childlike eyes and impressions.
My favorite Brosh post turned one of my pet peeves into a lovable creature. Annoyed by the number of people who seem to believe that “alot” is a word, she created the Alot, a furry, horned monstrosity that illustrates what people must really mean when they make reference to “alot.” For example, the phrase “I care about this alot” is accompanies by a cartoon character embracing Brosh’s Alot.
For the record, “alot” is not a word, even though “alot” of people seem to think that it is. Usually, the people who are using it mean to say “a lot,” as in “Gee, Scott sure has a lot of pet peeves.” You’ll notice that “a lot” is actually two words with a space between them. Together, those two words are a way of referring to many things or one small plot of real estate.
That said, there’s a similar word. It’s “allot,” but it means something entirely different. When you distribute something on an equal or prorated basis, you “allot” it. You can even use both “a lot” and “allot” in the same sentence, as in, “Pet peeves should be allotted equally, but it seems that I have a lot more than you do.”