Monday, March 7, 2016

Not Worth its Salt, Sugar

I made sure with my wife, "You don't want no salt and no sugar, right?"  Wrong, right?  Well, not verbalized wrong, but written misleadingly for sure.  As Ricky Ricardo (I Love Lucy Ricardo's husband, for you younger folks) would plead, "Let me splain."  My wife wanted her favorite bread and butter pickles--Kroger brand only, by the way.  I was double-checking with her that I shouldn't buy a no-salt or no-sugar variety.  Hence, I should have written, "You don't want no-salt or no-sugar, right?"  But then we wouldn't have enjoyed the whimsy.

Friday, January 29, 2016

Count your Blessings

"There's many things I can be thankful for, but distinguishing singular versus plural doesn't happen to be one of them."  Please say, "There are many things . . .."  This grammar point is brought up because it is mishandled by folks in so many different circles, from sports announcers to home-shopping pitchmen, etc.

Shut Up

How can you make fewer grammatical errors?  Shut up!  That is, stop talking before you err.  "Where is he?", not, "Where is he at?"  "How long will you be here?", not, "How long will you be here for?"  If we had said in school, "I don't know where he's at," the teacher might have slapped us with a ruler!  The main problem is not that there's a preposition at the end of the sentence, but that there's a totally unnecessary word. 

Thursday, December 4, 2014

Either Pronunciation

Well, I guess I'll quit trying to force the pronunciation of "either" to be with an "e" sound to start.  The controversy involving Americans and British need not begin Revolutionary War II.  That having been said, however, how many of you remember your teachers' discussing "either . . . or" and "neither . . . nor" and using the "i" sound to start "either" and "neither"?  A very small percentage, I feel sure.  I believe the late comedic genius--and grammar expert, no less--George Carlin put it this way:  "Why do you think the "e" pronunciation is given first in most dictionaries?!"

I'll remind readers, by the way, that I'm making a concerted effort to eliminate the word "nor" from the English language.  I can no longer find one logical, proper use of that word.

Saturday, November 29, 2014

Grammar Police Thwarted

Outlaw:  He could have went to work today.
Police:  Haven't you ever heard of past participles?
Outlaw:  Oh, yeah, I seen 'em.
Police:  Now I know why they're called past participles.  They've gone.

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

At Least it's not Russ's

You may have heard of Gus's World Famous Fried Chicken.  If it were a mom-and-pop outfit with only one location, this blog entry would not be interesting.  Fortunately it's a chain; so there are many outlets for Gus's World Famous Fried Chicken.  In other words, there are plenty of Gus'ses--that's right, three syllables, no less--oops, no fewer!  At least it's not Russ's.  Considering all the Russ'ses would remind me of the horror movie, Sssssss, a snake-filled production starring Strother ("Men, what we have here is failure to communicate.") Martin.  But I digress.  It turns out there's a bit more--and less--to Gus's.  I checked a phone directory for the correct full name of the company.  There are several locations in our area.  But gus--I mean--guess what?  One was listed as Gus . . .  and another as Guss's . . ..  That latter one I phoned to be sure it was the same outfit.  Yep, it is.  Either the employee or the phone folks must have misspelled Gus's.  I didn't bother to call the one listed as Gus . . ., since I figured a similar kind of snafu existed.  Anyway, if they can't get Gus's right, I doubt they're curious about all the Gus'ses, right?

By the way, many spell my nickname Les as "Less."  In fact, I use that idea in another blog,

Saturday, June 7, 2014

Rule Number Eight

Friends and neighbors, put "i" before "e" except after "c," unless the word is either foreign or weird--per Keith and Marcie Lieber.