If You See Something, Say Something

I like to think that my published posts are error free. No typos. No misspellings. No incorrect word usage. No punctuation faux pas. No grammatical errors. But I am my own proofreader, my own editor. And thus, my eyes often see what my brain is expecting them to see. And my brain is not expecting to see typos, misspellings, incorrect usage, punctuation and/or grammatical errors.

So I’m asking you, my fellow bloggers, to give me a helping hand. When you read my posts, if you see something, say something. Let me know in the comments if you spot an error, a mistake. I’m a big boy. I can take it. And I’d rather know of my error and fix it ASAP than let it be discovered by countless bloggers forever and for eternity.

I promise I won’t shoot the messenger.

Thank you

Blogging Insights — Reformed Grammar Nazi

Dr. Tanya has decided to change things up a bit for her weekly Blogging Insights prompt. Instead of using the Q&A format, she provides us with a quote about blogging or writing and ask us to express our opinion about said quote.

This week, quoting author Ruth Rendell, Tanya wants to know if we are grammar Nazis.

“What I mind in modern society very much is the awful lack of grammar.”

When I was in elementary (aka grammar) school, I spent a lot of time diagramming sentences. Grammar rules, proper punctuation, and correct use were emphasized. As a result, I grew up with much the same attitude that Ruth Rendell expressed. It drove me nuts to encounter grammar, punctuation, and usage errors. I used to get really annoyed and would actually stop reading anything that displayed poor grammar. I thought that there was simply no excuse for such errors, especially when I found them in published works where, presumably, an editor, or at least a proof reader, was involved before publication.

I will admit that I have mellowed quite a bit vis-à-vis poor grammar. While it still bothers me when I come across blatant grammar, punctuation, or usage errors, I try, like the proverbial duck, to let them roll off my back.

That said, if a blogger’s posts are regularly filled with grammatical errors, incorrect punctuation, or inappropriate usage, I will likely stop reading his or her posts. Especially if he or she uses an apostrophe to make a word plural.

Truthful Tuesday — The Grammar Police

Frank, aka PCGuy, has published another one of his Truthful Tuesday posts, and this week Frank wants to know…

What are your thoughts on Grammar? Are you part of the Grammar Police, or are you a Syntax and Spelling Renegade? Explain.

Blogging is a communications medium that relies on the written word. I believe that to be effective communications via the written word requires at least a fundamental proficiency in punctuation, grammar, and usage.

Thus, I’m more on the grammar police side of the equation. And to illustrate my point, I’m not a fan of the way that Frank used capitalization in his question for this prompt. Why did he capitalize the words “grammar,” “grammar police,” “syntax,” and “spelling renegade” in his question? Not only was it grammatically wrong to do so, but it was totally unnecessary.

On the other hand, we bloggers are only human and we make mistakes and typos. Most of us don’t have an editor on retainer to review our drafts and to correct our grammar, punctuation, usage, or spelling errors. So sometimes our posts aren’t grammatically perfect.

And I concur with Frank about using “text speech” in blog posts (like “U” and “K” for “you” and “okay,” respectively). That’s not okay.

Bottom line, I believe that, as Marshall McLuhan said, the medium is the message, and that blogging is a medium of the written word. Hence, for a blogger to get his or her message across, proper grammar, punctuation, usage, and spelling are a must.

So sayeth Fandango, a member in good standing of the grammar police.

Word Games

188EEA87-977A-441B-B3A5-18CD391CE089So Rory, aka, A Guy Called Bloke, came up with this game where we are supposed to “look at each of the word pairs below and say which word you use and why your choice of word is better than the other word.”

Then Rory said to nominate between 1 – 3 bloggers of our own to play the game and to explain why you have chosen that blogger.

But wait, there’s more. He wrote, “Additionally, add two of your own words that you may have confusion with.”

Rory tagged Melanie, aka, Sparks From a Combustible Mind, who then tagged me. Why did she tag me? She said she tagged me because I am “another wordsmith” and she thinks I “might have fun with this.” Then she said something about me being a nude skier. Don’t ask!

Anyway, here are Rory’s original word pairs. But before I get into saying which is “right,” let me say that I’m an American and most of the “which is right” choices are choices between the American word and the British word. So, of course, to me, the American word is right.

Mine = Herbs/Yours = Erbs

I’ve never seen the word “erbs” in writing or in print. In fact, my autocorrect keeps trying to change it to “webs.” Herbs are plants with leaves, seeds, or flowers used for flavoring, food, medicine, or perfume. Kentucky Fried Chicken (KFC) is supposed to have 11 herbs and spices. So is the choice really more about which word is correct or which pronunciation is correct? In America, the “h” in “herbs” is silent, so it’s pronounced like “erbs.” I’m not sure if, in the Queen’s English, the “h” is pronounced. They do strange things with h’s and with u’s across the pond.5581F866-92F2-4115-87AD-E94C58C91C04

Mine = Socks/Yours = Sox

The article of clothing you wrap your feet in is a sock. The baseball team that won this year’s World Series is the Sox — the Boston Red Sox.

Mine = CV/Yours = Resume

Either is right. Many job openings for positions in science and technology call for the submission of a CV (curriculum vitae). But it’s much more common — and less pretentious — in the States to use the word “resume.”

Mine = Ring Someone/Yours = Call Someone

When you want to get engaged or married, you give them a ring. When you want to talk on the phone, you call them. Period. End of discussion.

Mine = Rubbish Bin/Yours = Trash Can

I call it trash, because to me, “rubbish” is a synonym for “bullshit.” That said, when I put my trash by the curb for the weekly collection, I put it in trash bins.

Mine = Secondary School/Yours = High School

I went to an elementary school (not a grammar school), a junior high school (not a middle school), and a high school (not a secondary school). So there you go.

Mine = Lift/Yours = Elevator

“Lift” is a verb meaning to raise up, haul, heave, elevate. An “elevator” is something you step into to move from one floor to another in a multi-story building. So when in America, you use an elevator, not a lift. But I guess something can lift you up or can elevate you.

Mine = Ground Floor/Yours = First Floor

In many buildings, the ground floor and the first floor are the same, but in some buildings, the ground floor is below the first floor. For example, the ground floor of an office building could be comprised of a lobby and perhaps some retail stores or cafés, while the offices start on the floor above and it’s referred to as the first floor. So both could be right.

Mine = Holiday/Yours = Vacation

Christmas is a holiday, as is Thanksgiving, Memorial Day, and other such days. When you go away from home for a week or two, you’re going on vacation. Simple, right?

Mine = Post Code/Yours = Zip Code

In the U.S., we have zip codes. Canada has postal codes. Both are right, depending upon where you live or where you’re mailing something to.EBFEFB81-A728-4C1B-B9C9-8AE32D33F3AF

Mine = Jumper/Yours = Sweater

A “jumper” is someone who is standing on the roof of a tall building or on a bridge and is considering jumping in an effort to take his or her life. A “sweater” is something you wear, either for fashion or to keep you warm. Of course, a “sweater” could also be how you might describe someone who sweats a lot.D45D7598-BD22-44DF-BEDC-6F747C10FBD1

Mine = Lorry/Yours = Semi

I don’t use either. I use the word “truck,” and, for a large truck, I call it an “18-wheeler.”

Mine = Crisp/Yours = Chip

Bacon can be crisp. Cold air can be crisp. But a wafer-thin slice of potato that is fried or baked and eaten as a snack is a chip. And unless they’re stale, potato chips should be crispy.

Mine = Chips/Yours = Fries

Chips are wafer-thin slices of potatoes that are fried or baked and eaten as a snack. Fries are potatoes cut into strips and deep-fried. You may order fish and chips or a burger and fries, but no matter what you call them, they are fries.

Mine = Courgette/Yours = Zucchini

Zucchini. I’ve never heard the word “courgette.”

Mine = Aubergine/Yours = Eggplant

This is an eggplant emoji, not an aubergine emoji. ‘Nuff said.9A823B82-4772-48C9-AA16-203D6E28306E

Mine = Football/Yours = Soccer

Soccer is a sport that uses a round ball ⚽️ and where you can’t use your hands unless you’re the goalie. A football a prolate spheroid shaped ball 🏈 and the sport is much less boring than soccer.

And here are the ones Melanie added:

Mine = cookie/Yours = biscuit

In the U.S., a cookie is a small, typically round, flat, and crisp (but could be soft) baked good. A biscuit is a small, typically round cake of bread leavened with baking powder, baking soda, or sometimes yeast. I’d rather have a cookie than a biscuit, but I prefer biscuits in gravy to cookies in gravy. I’m just saying.

Mine = time off/Yours = leave

Both are correct, but to me, time off is shorter term, like from a few hours to a few days. But leave is longer term, as in I need to take maternity (or paternity) leave.

And here are my two adds:

Mine = Soda/Yours = Pop

Mine = Sub/Yours = Hoagie

I’m not tagging anyone in particular. If you want to play, please feel free to do so.