'Try to' vs. 'try and'

“I have been arguing with my husband about the word ‘try’ for years and I think you might be the right person to help me figure it out,” a reader wrote recently. “I was taught that it is unacceptable to say ‘try and’ because it should be ‘try to.’ An example would be as follows: ‘I am going to try to remember to turn off the light’ instead of ‘I am going to try and remember to turn off the light.’

“Can you help me? Is one actually correct or is it just one of those things where both are acceptable and it’s just one of my unfounded, not-backed-up-by-reality peeves?”

As I explained, "try and” is both right and wrong, though I’ll confess I have a strong preference here. “Try and,” though acceptable, defies my sense of logic and order. When I come across it in my editing work, I always change it to “try to.” Here's a closer look in my recent column.