How often do you hear someone use the word "literally"? Maybe you like to use this word. Well one should know that "literally" means actually and that it really happened. So in my attempt at humor in the title what I would in fact be saying is that my eyes actually popped out of my skull and fell on the floor.
Most people when they say "literally" the actually mean "figuratively". Now this does not mean that the word "literally" doesn't have a place in our language. We can use this word with greatest effectiveness with expressions or idioms. For example, we all know the expression "it was raining cats and dogs". Well, suppose that for some strange reason you were walking down the street and a real live cat and a real live dog fell out of the sky and landed near your feet due to some odd accident. This would be sad, but you could say "it was literally raining cats and dogs".
Here's another example; if you were driving and you got lost and were very desperate and looking on your map trying to figure out where you were and where you were going when finally you come to a barrier in the road. You are forced to stop your car. You get out of the car and see that the rest of the highway is destroyed and doesn't continue, but rather there is a gaping canyon where the highway once was. Then with complete confidence you could say "I was literally at the end of the road".
In all other situations when it is just an extreme feeling, but not something that is actually happening you should say "figuratively". And who knows, you might literally be the first person to leave a comment to this article. Just so you know that's not actually a picture of me with the eyes popping out. It's just some amazing guy with large loose eye sockets. He must be fun to have at a party.
I hope you figuratively have a blast this week.