Little editing/grammar mistakes that drive you up the wall

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meat.paste
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Re: Little editing mistakes that drive you up the wall

Postby meat.paste » Wed May 07, 2008 8:03 pm UTC

Owehn wrote:
meat.paste wrote:
gmalivuk wrote:
meat.paste wrote:Why did you bring me the book that I told you I did not want to be read to out of up for?

If I'm parsing that correctly, shouldn't it be, "What did you bring the book that I told you I did not want to be read to out of up for?"

Or would some of you say, "Why did you do that for?" And where does the "me" come from in the original version?


It's a quote from 1986-87 that has been kicking around in my memory, so I could be wrong about the pronoun. However, as I interpret the sentence, the book was brought upstairs by someone. The book then was given to me. I did not ask for the book. "Why did you bring me the book?" makes more sense than "What did you bring me the book?" Basically, parse out the clause that begins with "that." So sayeth my English-eth :)


Check gmalivuk's colored text: "What" is paired with "for", so it's saying "What did you [do that] for?"


I see the ambiguity now. I assumed the word 'that' is being used as an introduction to a subjunctive clause. As such, it could be re-worded to say, "Why did you bring me the book, which I told you I did not want to be read to out of, up for?" This makes it clear that it should be "What did you bring the book [clause] up for?" Gmalivuk is correct. I see why ending sentences with prepositions if frowned upon.
Huh? What?

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Re: Little editing mistakes that drive you up the wall

Postby Fat Tony » Fri May 09, 2008 2:02 am UTC

Just reading this thread is "driving me up the wall".
I hate when people misuse "me, myself, and I", mainly in two senses:
1. "When you're done gathering your research, print it out and give it to Ms. Martha or myself."
How the crap am I supposed to give it to yourself?
2. People who think that, regardless of the context, replacing "me" with "I" makes them sound more intelligent and proper.
"Who should I give it to?"
"I."

Ironically, I don't mind when people say, "Me and Frankie are blahblah," and in fact prefer to speak that way sometimes, it just depends on which sounds better in a given sentence.

I hate when people don't know when to use a colon, semicolon, comma, conjunction, or just to make a new sentence. This is a particularly aggravating issue because everyone has a different sense of when you would use each.
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Re: Little editing mistakes that drive you up the wall

Postby GhostWolfe » Fri May 09, 2008 2:27 am UTC

There's a spelling error in this thread title that always makes me twitch. :)

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Re: Little editing mistakes that drive you up the wall

Postby aweitnauer » Fri May 09, 2008 4:27 am UTC

Glade wrote:I don't like it when people forget the final comma in a list. It makes me angry, annoyed, and agitated.


I agree with you. I am a fan of the Oxford Comma as well, but it is not required. And it's not grammatically incorrect to leave it out.

I find it best practice to always use the Oxford Comma because when you are listing things that go together it makes it easier to realize the distinction. Example: When I go out my favorite things to do are run, sing and dance, and bike. Had it read: "...are run, sing and dance and bike" it would be a little more confusing. Of course you can always switch it around so it reads, "...are sing and dance, run and bike.

The Oxford Comma adds clarity.

EDIT: I just read the rest of the thread and the sentence about monkeys and mechanics.
Last night, my mother, a mechanic, and a monkey came to dinner.

This is confusing as to the number of guests in attendance.

How about this?
Last night my mother the mechanic and a monkey came to dinner.

Now it's clear that the mother is the mechanic.

But I see when I try to say it's three guests instead, and use the Oxford comma (Last night my mother, a mechanic, and a monkey came to dinner.), it could read either way as my mother who's the mechanic, or as a list of three individuals.

And if we jump to a world where no Oxford comma exists, it is clear if it means three attendees (with no comma present) or is off setting a nonessential element (with a comma present).

You got me. I have been a huge fan of the Oxford comma, but this is surely an example that demonstrates that its existence breeds confusion. I may never sleep again.

This thread is the best.

You're new, so I'll just point out for the record that using red in posts is generally frowned upon as that's the color moderators use when editing something or using Mod Voice to enforce rules in a thread. - gmalivuk

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Re: Little editing mistakes that drive you up the wall

Postby goofy » Mon May 12, 2008 5:46 pm UTC

Fat Tony wrote:Just reading this thread is "driving me up the wall".
I hate when people misuse "me, myself, and I", mainly in two senses:
1. "When you're done gathering your research, print it out and give it to Ms. Martha or myself."
How the crap am I supposed to give it to yourself?


There's nothing wrong with using a reflexive pronoun without a same-clause antecedent. It's been part of English for 200 years. It might sometimes sound silly, but lots of things can sound silly, that doesn't mean they're wrong.

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Re: Little editing/grammar mistakes that drive you up the wall

Postby ZLVT » Tue May 13, 2008 1:43 am UTC

there's in stead of there're. Really gets to me.
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Re: Little editing mistakes that drive you up the wall

Postby Random832 » Tue May 13, 2008 1:39 pm UTC

meat.paste wrote:
Owehn wrote:
meat.paste wrote:
gmalivuk wrote:
meat.paste wrote:Why did you bring me the book that I told you I did not want to be read to out of up for?

If I'm parsing that correctly, shouldn't it be, "What did you bring the book that I told you I did not want to be read to out of up for?"

Or would some of you say, "Why did you do that for?" And where does the "me" come from in the original version?


It's a quote from 1986-87 that has been kicking around in my memory, so I could be wrong about the pronoun. However, as I interpret the sentence, the book was brought upstairs by someone. The book then was given to me. I did not ask for the book. "Why did you bring me the book?" makes more sense than "What did you bring me the book?" Basically, parse out the clause that begins with "that." So sayeth my English-eth :)


Check gmalivuk's colored text: "What" is paired with "for", so it's saying "What did you [do that] for?"


I see the ambiguity now. I assumed the word 'that' is being used as an introduction to a subjunctive clause. As such, it could be re-worded to say, "Why did you bring me the book, which I told you I did not want to be read to out of, up for?" This makes it clear that it should be "What did you bring the book [clause] up for?" Gmalivuk is correct. I see why ending sentences with prepositions if frowned upon.


There is an actual problem with the sentence, beyond the ambiguity - "Bring me [something] up" is not proper grammar - one or the other, not both. That's one of the reasons it parses weird.

And no, a comma doesn't belong there. In speech, a pause might be helpful, but commas have had actual rules for hundreds of years.

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Re: Little editing/grammar mistakes that drive you up the wall

Postby goofy » Tue May 13, 2008 2:04 pm UTC

commas have had actual rules for hundreds of years.


What do you mean by "actual rules?" There are trends in punctuation, but trends change. In the 18th century it was common to put a comma between the subject and the predicate. This is discouraged nowadays.

"Bring me [something] up" is not proper grammar - one or the other, not both.


I wouldn't say "bring me something up", but I don't see what's wrong with "bring me up something."

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Re: Little editing mistakes that drive you up the wall

Postby 22/7 » Thu Jun 05, 2008 3:22 pm UTC

Silas wrote:
22/7 wrote:...
No, it's definitely grammatically redundant. The word 'intended' is a part of the prepositional phrase, "for what it is intended," so the second 'for' doesn't belong to it.


If "for what it is intended" were a prepositional phrase, we should be able to snip off the preposition and be left with a simple noun phrase. But "*what it is intended" doesn't fit the bill: you can't use it as, say, the subject of a sentence (*What it is intended goes offends both God and man).

On the other hand, "what it is intended for" can be used like that: "What it is intended for offends both God and man."
Fine, use "what is intended" instead. "What it is intended" is awkward anyway.
Totally not a hypothetical...

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Re: Little editing/grammar mistakes that drive you up the wall

Postby RamonaQuimby » Fri Jun 06, 2008 6:15 pm UTC

Timbaland won a Teen Choice Award for his song titled (and containing the phrase) "The Way I Are." Rhianna has a song titled "S.O.S." that contains the lyrics "Y.O.U. are making this hard" which, when spoken, can be interpreted as "Y.O.U.R. making this hard." Particularly if they are spoken to an audience that would award an artist for a song titled "The Way I Are." The point I'm trying to make is that we are all doomed.

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Re: Little editing/grammar mistakes that drive you up the wall

Postby Fyda » Sat Jun 07, 2008 10:36 am UTC

There was a lot of discussion in this thread about the comma, so I'm surprised that no one has brought up my pet peeve: comma splices.

I'm seeing them all over the place in Wikipedia articles, and it's driving me mad. Well, of course, they've also appeared elsewhere, but what's maddening about seeing it on Wikipedia is that I have to drag myself away from the "edit" link, lest I become some sort of worn-out GrammarCheckBot*.

In a twist of something vaguely resembling irony, Frank Herbert's Dune remains one of my favourite novels.


* Is CamelCase a pet peeve of someone else here?

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Re: Little editing/grammar mistakes that drive you up the wall

Postby Fat Tony » Mon Jun 09, 2008 7:12 pm UTC

What's a comma splice? Is that, something like this?
What happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas!
Oh god, I'm burning on the inside just from typing that.
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Re: Little editing/grammar mistakes that drive you up the wall

Postby Owehn » Mon Jun 09, 2008 8:15 pm UTC

No, a comma splice is the name for two independent clauses joined by a comma, it is jarring and should be avoided.
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Re: Little editing/grammar mistakes that drive you up the wall

Postby Fat Tony » Mon Jun 09, 2008 10:55 pm UTC

I'm not feelin' it.
Could you give an example?
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Re: Little editing/grammar mistakes that drive you up the wall

Postby Owehn » Mon Jun 09, 2008 11:27 pm UTC

I can't tell whether you're being serious, this post and my earlier one both contain comma splices.
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Re: Little editing/grammar mistakes that drive you up the wall

Postby snafubar » Tue Jun 10, 2008 12:51 am UTC

The grammatical error I've found jumping out at me the most lately in speech and typing is the use of "good" where it should be "well", as in "I write good."

Then again I realize that this usage is so pervasive that it will likely become entirely acceptable soon if it hasn't already.

I do sometimes break my own rule in certain situations such as answering "how are you?" "I'm good."
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Re: Little editing/grammar mistakes that drive you up the wall

Postby Fat Tony » Tue Jun 10, 2008 1:15 am UTC

Owehn wrote:I can't tell whether you're being serious, this post and my earlier one both contain comma splices.

D'oh!
I get it now; it's the use of a comma where there should be a semicolon.
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Re: Little editing/grammar mistakes that drive you up the wall

Postby pet » Tue Jun 10, 2008 3:47 am UTC

Fat Tony wrote:
Owehn wrote:I can't tell whether you're being serious, this post and my earlier one both contain comma splices.

D'oh!
I get it now; it's the use of a comma where there should be a semicolon.


Yep, but the examples you offered earlier, while not true comma splices, are also excruciatingly annoying to me. I find now that often people insert commas anywhere that one would naturally pause while speaking, regardless of whether or not a comma is actually required. "What happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas" and "It's what makes a Subaru, a Subaru" both kill me every time they come on TV.

Speaking of good vs. well, is anyone else driven MAD by "I feel badly"?
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Re: Little editing/grammar mistakes that drive you up the wall

Postby Owehn » Tue Jun 10, 2008 11:32 am UTC

Is anyone else driven MAD by "I feel badly"?
Depends if they're wearing thick gloves. Otherwise, that sentence and ones like it drive me madly.
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Re: Little editing/grammar mistakes that drive you up the wall

Postby TheGrammarBolshevik » Mon Jun 30, 2008 3:40 am UTC

I delurked to post a diagram that I made threw together in Inkscape of the sentence "Please use this bin for what it is intended for." Then I realized that I haven't met the post count requirement for making a link.

I'll try to remember it later on. However, the point that it illustrates is that "what" has a relationship to "it is intended." Without the word "for," it would seem to belong as a direct object, but the passive verb "is intended" cannot take an object. Clearly, "it" must "[be] intended" for something for the sentence to be grammatical. Therefore, the second "for" is not only not redundant, but necessary.
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Re: Little editing/grammar mistakes that drive you up the wall

Postby Random832 » Mon Jun 30, 2008 12:39 pm UTC

pet wrote:Yep, but the examples you offered earlier, while not true comma splices, are also excruciatingly annoying to me. I find now that often people insert commas anywhere that one would naturally pause while speaking, regardless of whether or not a comma is actually required. "What happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas" and "It's what makes a Subaru, a Subaru" both kill me every time they come on TV.


A comma originally just meant anywhere you'd naturally pause - it's only later on that people started making up rules for where to put them.

TheGrammarBolshevik wrote:I delurked to post a diagram that I made threw together in Inkscape of the sentence "Please use this bin for what it is intended for." Then I realized that I haven't met the post count requirement for making a link.


I don't believe embedded images count as links - and even if they do (and/or your image hosting service requires backlinks) you could simply attach it as a file (converted to a raster image format, of course - not everyone's browser supports SVG, and I don't think you can attach them anyway)

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Re: Little editing/grammar mistakes that drive you up the wall

Postby goofy » Mon Jun 30, 2008 2:36 pm UTC

TheGrammarBolshevik wrote:I delurked to post a diagram that I made threw together in Inkscape of the sentence "Please use this bin for what it is intended for." Then I realized that I haven't met the post count requirement for making a link.

I'll try to remember it later on. However, the point that it illustrates is that "what" has a relationship to "it is intended." Without the word "for," it would seem to belong as a direct object, but the passive verb "is intended" cannot take an object. Clearly, "it" must "[be] intended" for something for the sentence to be grammatical. Therefore, the second "for" is not only not redundant, but necessary.


You could also have "Please use this bin for that for which it is intended." They are both grammatical.

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Re: Little editing/grammar mistakes that drive you up the wall

Postby TheGrammarBolshevik » Mon Jun 30, 2008 3:17 pm UTC

goofy wrote:
TheGrammarBolshevik wrote:--Snip--


You could also have "Please use this bin for that for which it is intended." They are both grammatical.


Yes, the sentence can be reworked and grammatical. However, the point in contention was whether the sentence "Please use this bin for what it is intended for" is redundant. My point is that the second "for" links "what" to "it is intended"; otherwise, "what" would be syntactically stranded from the rest of the sentence.

Edit: All right, here's that diagram:
grammar.png
grammar.png (14.25 KiB) Viewed 5247 times

As you can see, there are two separate instances of the word "for," each fulfilling a different job in the sentence. Without the second "for," "what" has nowhere to go w/r/t "it is intended."

Barring, of course, some silly error on my part. It has been known to happen :wink:.
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Re: Little editing/grammar mistakes that drive you up the wall

Postby gibberishtwist » Wed Jul 02, 2008 7:19 am UTC

I'm a little embarrassed by this, but I have to ask: How the hell do you use possessive apostrophes? I understand contractions, but for some reason possession has always confused me. It seems sometimes a possessive needs an apostrophe and other times it doesn't, seemingly at random.

Oxford comma: Obviously it's not required, but I've found it can be useful for clarifying something you're saying. Usually I just decide whether or not to use it based on the sentence.

I can understand why homonyms are confusing for people, but I cannot understand why they're so widely misused. Is it really so hard to remember "They're going over there to their house, then having a party that's better than yours?" Sheesh =P

I don't know if this is technically incorrect or not, but the phrase "an historic" with emphasis on the H irritates the shit out of me. Shouldn't it be "an 'istoric" or "A historic" in pronunciation? Yarrrgh. Also, the difference between pronounce and pronunciation has bothered me ever since I learned they were, in fact, different words. If you pronounce words correctly, you have good pronunciation.

Edit: I love semicolons. Just so you guys know.
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Re: Little editing/grammar mistakes that drive you up the wall

Postby liza » Wed Jul 02, 2008 7:45 am UTC

gibberishtwist wrote:I'm a little embarrassed by this, but I have to ask: How the hell do you use possessive apostrophes? I understand contractions, but for some reason possession has always confused me. It seems sometimes a possessive needs an apostrophe and other times it doesn't, seemingly at random.

Nouns, proper or common, need possessive apostrophes. For singular nouns, add 's (e.g. Harry's, or the dog's); for plural nouns, add just an apostrophe (e.g. the Wilkinsons', or the cats'). When the singular noun ends in an s, some people say just add an apostrophe (e.g. Jesus') but I've never seen a reputable source endorse that; everything I've seen advocates using an apostrophe and an s (e.g. Jesus's).
Do not use apostrophes for possessive pronouns (e.g. hers, his, its, yours).
If this isn't a lucid enough explanation, there are myriad internet sources you can easily consult.
gibberishtwit wrote:I don't know if this is technically incorrect or not, but the phrase "an historic" with emphasis on the H irritates the shit out of me. Shouldn't it be "an 'istoric" or "A historic" in pronunciation? Yarrrgh.

Lynch Grammar Guide wrote:One tricky case comes up from time to time: is it "a historic occasion" or "an historic occasion"? Some speakers favor the latter — more British than American speakers, but you'll find them in both places — using an on longish words (three or more syllables) beginning with h, where the first syllable isn't accented. They'd say, for instance, "a hístory textbook" (accent on the first syllable) but "an históric event." (Likewise "a hábit" but "an habítual offender," "a hýpothetical question" but "an hypóthesis.") Still, most guides prefer a before any h that's sounded: "a historic occasion," "a hysterical joke," "a habitual offender" — but "an honor" and "an hour" because those h's aren't sounded.

So stresses within a word can de-emphasize an h to the point "an" is acceptable by some. That's where it comes from at least; I'm not trying to claim one method is "correct" or what have you.
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Re: Little editing mistakes that drive you up the wall

Postby ADXCKGuy » Wed Jul 02, 2008 2:20 pm UTC

Regarding “what [...] for”, “what for/for what?” is interchangeable with “why?”, in fact, in French, “‘pourquoi”, meaning why, is literally a combination of “pour”, for, and “quoi”, what. This may have influenced the same peculiarity in English.

fallenstar wrote:On the subject of "it's/its," I really try to use it correctly, but I forget which one means which thing. Is "its" possessive or a conjunction? When in doubt I tend to insert the apostrophe.
Neither is a conjunction.



My recent major grammar pet peeve is “that[/those] of [a ]_____’s”.
It’s either “_____’s” or “that[/those] of [a ]_____”. Combining them is redundant!
I had a huge fight about this with some editors on Wikipedia who just would not understand that saying that “Roserade’s legs are like those of Roselia’s”( Pokémon) expands to “the legs of Roserade are like the legs of the legs of Roselia”.( And since those of you not familiar with Pokémon may be wondering, Roselia’s legs do not have legs of their own.)

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Re: Little editing/grammar mistakes that drive you up the wall

Postby markfiend » Wed Jul 02, 2008 3:22 pm UTC

liza wrote:some people say just add an apostrophe (e.g. Jesus') but I've never seen a reputable source endorse that; everything I've seen advocates using an apostrophe and an s (e.g. Jesus's).

FWIW Jesus (and Moses) is a special case whereby the singular possessive is just Jesus' (and Moses'). (They're still pronounced like "Jesus's" and "Moses's" though.)
For the most part you would put (e.g.) Chris's car.
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Re: Little editing/grammar mistakes that drive you up the wall

Postby Random832 » Wed Jul 02, 2008 3:34 pm UTC

markfiend wrote:FWIW Jesus (and Moses) is a special case whereby the singular possessive is just Jesus' (and Moses'). (They're still pronounced like "Jesus's" and "Moses's" though.)


Absolutely not. If it's written without the "s", it's pronounced without it as well. (and it can be optionally written either way, it doesn't have to be written without the extra "s" as you imply)

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Re: Little editing/grammar mistakes that drive you up the wall

Postby 22/7 » Wed Jul 02, 2008 7:14 pm UTC

Random832 wrote:
markfiend wrote:FWIW Jesus (and Moses) is a special case whereby the singular possessive is just Jesus' (and Moses'). (They're still pronounced like "Jesus's" and "Moses's" though.)


Absolutely not. If it's written without the "s", it's pronounced without it as well. (and it can be optionally written either way, it doesn't have to be written without the extra "s" as you imply)

Be careful spouting what is "correct" about English grammar in these parts. Some have been known to get eaten for it.

I agree with the (Jesus') and (Moses') examples markfiend was giving (Jesus and Moses are special because they're Jesus and Moses, or some such), as well as Random's pronunciation of Jesus' and Moses' as opposed to Chris's, for example.
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Re: Little editing/grammar mistakes that drive you up the wall

Postby Random832 » Wed Jul 02, 2008 7:28 pm UTC

22/7 wrote:
Random832 wrote:
markfiend wrote:FWIW Jesus (and Moses) is a special case whereby the singular possessive is just Jesus' (and Moses'). (They're still pronounced like "Jesus's" and "Moses's" though.)


Absolutely not. If it's written without the "s", it's pronounced without it as well. (and it can be optionally written either way, it doesn't have to be written without the extra "s" as you imply)

Be careful spouting what is "correct" about English grammar in these parts. Some have been known to get eaten for it.


I am talking not about grammar, but about spelling (which I hope we haven't abandoned the idea of there being a correct way to spell things). What is pronounced as "dʒɪːzʌsәz" is written "Jesus's" and no other way.

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Re: Little editing/grammar mistakes that drive you up the wall

Postby gibberishtwist » Thu Jul 03, 2008 2:38 am UTC

liza wrote:Nouns, proper or common, need possessive apostrophes. For singular nouns, add 's (e.g. Harry's, or the dog's); for plural nouns, add just an apostrophe (e.g. the Wilkinsons', or the cats'). When the singular noun ends in an s, some people say just add an apostrophe (e.g. Jesus') but I've never seen a reputable source endorse that; everything I've seen advocates using an apostrophe and an s (e.g. Jesus's)


Thank you. "Its" was the one that always really confused me
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Re: Little editing/grammar mistakes that drive you up the wall

Postby gmalivuk » Thu Jul 03, 2008 3:45 am UTC

I think the "rule" that gives us Jesus' and Moses' while at the same time also having boss's, is that if the last *two* consonants in a name are sibilant, you don't need to write (or pronounce) yet a third s after that. There's a whole thread somewhere round these parts about apostrophe's, though.

(Yes, that was intentional.)
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Re: Little editing/grammar mistakes that drive you up the wall

Postby Ari » Thu Jul 03, 2008 5:24 am UTC

aweitnauer wrote:
Glade wrote:I don't like it when people forget the final comma in a list. It makes me angry, annoyed, and agitated.


I agree with you. I am a fan of the Oxford Comma as well, but it is not required. And it's not grammatically incorrect to leave it out.

I find it best practice to always use the Oxford Comma because when you are listing things that go together it makes it easier to realize the distinction. Example: When I go out my favorite things to do are run, sing and dance, and bike. Had it read: "...are run, sing and dance and bike" it would be a little more confusing. Of course you can always switch it around so it reads, "...are sing and dance, run and bike.

The Oxford Comma adds clarity.


I'd generally call it a serial comma, but I agree. It's especially useful for lists with "and" internal to one of the items listed:

The people involved were Bob, Richard, Steve and Gloria, and Nigel.

aweitnauer wrote:EDIT: I just read the rest of the thread and the sentence about monkeys and mechanics.
Last night, my mother, a mechanic, and a monkey came to dinner.

This is confusing as to the number of guests in attendance.

How about this?
Last night my mother the mechanic and a monkey came to dinner.

Now it's clear that the mother is the mechanic.

But I see when I try to say it's three guests instead, and use the Oxford comma (Last night my mother, a mechanic, and a monkey came to dinner.), it could read either way as my mother who's the mechanic, or as a list of three individuals.

And if we jump to a world where no Oxford comma exists, it is clear if it means three attendees (with no comma present) or is off setting a nonessential element (with a comma present).

You got me. I have been a huge fan of the Oxford comma, but this is surely an example that demonstrates that its existence breeds confusion. I may never sleep again.

This thread is the best.

You're new, so I'll just point out for the record that using red in posts is generally frowned upon as that's the color moderators use when editing something or using Mod Voice to enforce rules in a thread. - gmalivuk


I'd simply go with "Last night, my mother (the mechanic) and a monkey came to dinner." ;)

Random832 wrote:
markfiend wrote:FWIW Jesus (and Moses) is a special case whereby the singular possessive is just Jesus' (and Moses'). (They're still pronounced like "Jesus's" and "Moses's" though.)


Absolutely not. If it's written without the "s", it's pronounced without it as well. (and it can be optionally written either way, it doesn't have to be written without the extra "s" as you imply)


By the same logic, you should just hold the "s" longer, as it's written without the extra short vowel required to start a new syllable. ;)
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Re: Little editing/grammar mistakes that drive you up the wall

Postby 22/7 » Thu Jul 03, 2008 2:55 pm UTC

Random832 wrote:
22/7 wrote:
Random832 wrote:
markfiend wrote:FWIW Jesus (and Moses) is a special case whereby the singular possessive is just Jesus' (and Moses'). (They're still pronounced like "Jesus's" and "Moses's" though.)


Absolutely not. If it's written without the "s", it's pronounced without it as well. (and it can be optionally written either way, it doesn't have to be written without the extra "s" as you imply)

Be careful spouting what is "correct" about English grammar in these parts. Some have been known to get eaten for it.


I am talking not about grammar, but about spelling (which I hope we haven't abandoned the idea of there being a correct way to spell things). What is pronounced as "dʒɪːzʌsәz" is written "Jesus's" and no other way.

Sorry, I should have said "the English language and its proper use". Regardless, Jesus' and Moses' are just fine. I believe the explanation put forth by gmal was what I was actually taught, but it quickly became "Jesus and Moses are different" because the sibilant s at the end of a noun (that you're making possessive) is so rare.
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Re: Little editing/grammar mistakes that drive you up the wall

Postby Random832 » Thu Jul 03, 2008 7:54 pm UTC

22/7 wrote:
Random832 wrote:
22/7 wrote:
Random832 wrote:
markfiend wrote:FWIW Jesus (and Moses) is a special case whereby the singular possessive is just Jesus' (and Moses'). (They're still pronounced like "Jesus's" and "Moses's" though.)


Absolutely not. If it's written without the "s", it's pronounced without it as well. (and it can be optionally written either way, it doesn't have to be written without the extra "s" as you imply)

Be careful spouting what is "correct" about English grammar in these parts. Some have been known to get eaten for it.


I am talking not about grammar, but about spelling (which I hope we haven't abandoned the idea of there being a correct way to spell things). What is pronounced as "dʒɪːzʌsәz" is written "Jesus's" and no other way.

Sorry, I should have said "the English language and its proper use". Regardless, Jesus' and Moses' are just fine.


Yes, they are fine, but they denote specific pronunciations that are different from "Jesus's" and "Moses's".

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Re: Little editing/grammar mistakes that drive you up the wall

Postby markfiend » Fri Jul 04, 2008 8:44 am UTC

Random832 wrote:
22/7 wrote:Sorry, I should have said "the English language and its proper use". Regardless, Jesus' and Moses' are just fine.


Yes, they are fine, but they denote specific pronunciations that are different from "Jesus's" and "Moses's".

I do think you're wrong, but I'm not going to push it as you're obviously equally convinced.

Should we just agree to disagree then?

(oops, I messed up the quote tags... All better now.)
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Re: Little editing/grammar mistakes that drive you up the wall

Postby 22/7 » Wed Jul 09, 2008 11:07 pm UTC

markfiend wrote:
Random832 wrote:
22/7 wrote:Sorry, I should have said "the English language and its proper use". Regardless, Jesus' and Moses' are just fine.


Yes, they are fine, but they denote specific pronunciations that are different from "Jesus's" and "Moses's".

I do think you're wrong, but I'm not going to push it as you're obviously equally convinced.

Should we just agree to disagree then?

(oops, I messed up the quote tags... All better now.)

Hell no! ARGUE!
Totally not a hypothetical...

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Re: Little editing mistakes that drive you up the wall

Postby Eugo » Fri Jul 11, 2008 3:13 am UTC

Band B wrote:Or when they put the € ($, £, ...) after the number. 30€ aaaaargh.


Or the awful habit of putting unit of currency before the amount - anything else, anywhere else is in number first, unit later. Only the USD symbol comes before the number, contrary to all known habits.

You put meters, days, kilos, pounds, seconds, percentage sign, anything except the minus sign after the number - now, why would a $ come before it, is beyond me.

ZLVT wrote:do you mean to say people are confusing nominaive and accusative personal pronouns?

Did I ever mention my desire to form a Nice Typo Collectors' Club?

When they heard the accusative tone of the question, both pronouns remained nominally naive.

markfiend wrote:
cephalopod9 wrote:How about confusing "roll" and "role"?

Ooh, ooh, my go! My go! I got one!


I got a few hundred: http://www.ndragan.com/lange/spellmain.html

jaap wrote:How about "a criteria"?
Criteria is plural, dammit! It should be "a criterion".
The same goes for "maxima", "minima", but I can accept "data" as grammatically singular, as it can be seen as an uncountable mass noun.

I can't. Data are. A datum is.

Where was datum lost and replaced with a meaningless piece of information, I don't know, but whoever did it would do well to hide.
Last edited by Eugo on Fri Jul 11, 2008 3:35 am UTC, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Little editing mistakes that drive you up the wall

Postby gmalivuk » Sun Jul 13, 2008 5:45 am UTC

Eugo wrote:Or the awful habit of putting unit of currency before the amount - anything else, anywhere else is in number first, unit later. Only the $ symbol is one of the few that comes before the number, contrary to all known habits.

Fixed, to reflect the fact that the US is far from the only country that uses that symbol for its currency, and the fact that it's not the only currency symbol to go before the number.

jaap wrote:How about "a criteria"?
Criteria is plural, dammit! It should be "a criterion".
The same goes for "maxima", "minima", but I can accept "data" as grammatically singular, as it can be seen as an uncountable mass noun.

I can't. Data are. A datum is.

Where was datum lost and replaced with a meaningless piece of information, I don't know, but whoever did it would do well to hide.

I'm sorry you can't adjust to modern English, but that just means you'll have trouble understanding and making yourself understood to a great many people. Also, it's not as though it happened because one person decided to stop using "datum" for the singular. It happened over time because the uses of "datum" were already so hugely outnumbered by "data" as a plural, that the latter became uncountable.
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Re: Little editing mistakes that drive you up the wall

Postby Eugo » Sun Jul 13, 2008 6:09 am UTC

gmalivuk wrote:I'm sorry you can't adjust to modern English, but that just means you'll have trouble understanding and making yourself understood to a great many people. Also, it's not as though it happened because one person decided to stop using "datum" for the singular. It happened over time because the uses of "datum" were already so hugely outnumbered by "data" as a plural, that the latter became uncountable.


Oh I can adjust and make myself clear - just can't bring myself to like it when a good word is lost. And actually not lost - we know it, right? - it's just become unknown by the time when we needed it again. So in the middle of the IT boom, we have computers which process gigastones of data, but can't extract a single datum out of them, we have to call it "piece of information".
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