Grammar Giggle – Start Contrast

More material from “Breaking News” stories from my local news station. When you’re talking about something that is very different from something else, it should be in stark contrast to. They just got that all wrong and it was how the story started.

New Words From Merriam-Webster

The pandemic created a special update to the Merriam-Webster.com dictionary. The new words include COVID-19 and social distancing. They also include these related words and definitions:

  • Self-isolate: to isolate or separate oneself or itself from others.
  • Physical distancing: the practice of maintaining a greater than usual physical space between oneself and other people or of avoiding direct contact with people or objects in public places during the outbreak of a contagious disease in order to minimize exposure and reduce the transmission of infection.
  • WFH: abbreviation for “working from home.”
  • PPE: abbreviation for “personal protective equipment.”
  • Intensivist: a physician who specializes in the care and treatment of patients in intensive care.

New technology words include deepfake: an image or recording that has been convincingly altered and manipulated to misrepresent someone as doing or saying something that was not actually done or said.

An informal pronunciation spelling has turned up in the dictionary as “finna” meaning “fixing to” do something.

And my favorite of the short list I saw is truthiness: a seemingly truthful quality not supported by facts or evidence.

It’s always good to look up words you haven’t seen before or aren’t sure of their meaning in a dictionary. Learn every day. It is so easy with the ability to get dictionary definitions from Merriam-Webster, Oxford, and other reputable dictionaries on a cell phone that it doesn’t make any sense not to understand what a word means so you can use it correctly.

Grammar Giggle – Seeing Machine

Facebook Marketplace is a plethora of content for Grammar Giggles. Please understand that I am not making fun of people for making mistakes, I’m using those mistakes as a teaching mechanism for proofreading E V E R Y T H I N G! That said, I found this on Facebook Marketplace recently. I understand that the “e” and the “w” are right next to each other on the keyboard, but can we at least look at what we are posting before we actually hit “post”? Or at least edit it afterward if we notice it later?

Grammar Giggle – His’ Apartment

This was a local news story and although I feared the apostrophe in “his” was something on my phone, it was not. And then I found the second error. Tucson, Arizona, is spelled “T U C S O N,” although it is frequently misspelled. But for an Arizona news station to misspell it–in the same article that they added an apostrophe to “his”–is inexcusable. “His” doesn’t need an apostrophe because the word itself means that it belongs to him so there is no other possessive for HIS apartment.

Confusing Words

It’s time for “PTB Confusing Words” where I take a set of two or three words that get confused and give you definitions and try to give you a memory trick to help you remember when to use which word. If you have words that confuse you, use the Ask PTB tab on the website or send an email to proofthatblog@gmail.com and they may appear here soon!

This week’s words are:

  • pedal – (adj.) pertaining to the foot; (n.) a treadle (as in to step on the pedal)
    • She almost got in an accident until she slammed on her brake pedal.
  • peddle – to hawk; to sell
    • The woman on the corner looked like it was her job to peddle all the roses and giant teddy bears for Mother’s Day.

Memory tips:

  • pedal – “PED” is foot and a pedal takes you A Long way to all the places
  • peddle – think of the double letter and the definition–“sell” has two “l’s” and “peddle” has two “d’s”