As a proofer, I sometimes shake my head in wonder and chuckle at word problems. This headline, for example: How Much it Costs for a Family to Live in 20 U.S. Cities "Say what?!" I thought it was difficult paying our bills, but 20 different places to keep up? The kitchen gadgets alone would kill the York budget! OK, I know the author meant 'Living Costs … [Read more...] about “Say WHAT?!”
In early 2016 - you may recall with great trepidation - the series Downton Abbey ended its run on PBS (the Public Broadcasting System in the United States). And lo! there was an outcry in the land! Whether it's Downton Abbey, Victoria, or Poldark, if you watch a lot of PBS, do you find yourself repeating Brit-speak? Or is it just me? Oops! Not too long … [Read more...] about Brit-speak: is it just me?
I jump on my soapbox, quite often, about this-n-that in the grammar world. Usually, it's minor irritations. But this one is creepy. I can't figure it out. Sometime in 2015, I began noticing people using the word ‘is’ incorrectly. The first time I heard it, I was listening to a talk show. I figured the host made a mistake. But no. It’s spreading. What’s … [Read more...] about Someone kidnapped ‘has’ and ‘does’
“When you proof a book,” my friend asked, “what’s the first thing you look for?” “That.” “That what?” “Just 'that.'” A long pause. “I don’t underst…” “I search for the filler word ‘that.’ I need to delete most of them.” “Oh-h-h. How long does it take?” I sighed. “Several hours.” Several hours? Oof! To delete a word over-and-over-and- …? It isn’t as … [Read more...] about Save Money. Get a ‘That’ Eraser!
“I’m correcting your grammar in my head.” Oh, how I wish I had bought that sign for my office, just to start each day with a grin ... or a grumble, depending on the situation. Here's one of the 'grumbles': Over the past couple of decades, I have become alarmed with the decline in Americans’ grammar. Many schools have curtailed training in our nation’s … [Read more...] about ‘Him,’ ‘Me,’ and ‘I’: Grammar Check
“What did I say? Did I start that sentence ... with ... ‘actually’?” Not Kathie York, the grammar doyenne! Surely not. Unfortunately, Mrs. York’s Mr. York – with a twinkle in his eye because he’d caught me in a word-filler faux pas – corroborated it: “Yes, you began that sentence with ‘actually’.” I’ve been known to start over to say things properly. It … [Read more...] about ‘Actually’ + ‘Literally’ = Yikes!