Grammar Giggle – Hot Mess Memories

My brother sent this to me from a local newspaper remembering a drive-in theatre in Mesa. “It’s” is one of those words that does not follow the normal possession rules. The only time to use “it’s” is as a contraction of “it is.” If “it” owns something, it is simply “its.”

Plus, if you are talking about decades, they got it right the second time–the last two numerals of the decade, no apostrophe, and “s.” You wouldn’t spell it out once and then use numerals once.

Finally, “til” isn’t a word. It should be “until.” However, Merriam Webster and the Urban Dictionary disagree and say that “’til” is a contraction for “until,” but not in formal writing. That means that even though this wouldn’t be considered “formal” writing, this example is still incorrect since there is no apostrophe to indicate the “un” is missing.

Happy Presidents’ Day!

There is some discussion about the apostrophe for President’s/Presidents’/Presidents Day. Some say it is only to recognize the current sitting President, which would make it “President’s” Day. Others say the day doesn’t belong to any of the Presidents, so it doesn’t need an apostrophe at all, and I think the rest of them don’t know which way is correct, so they just put one where they always do just to make the darn word plural.

My thought is that it is a national holiday designated to recognize all of the U.S. Presidents, so since the word Presidents is plural, you just need an apostrophe to show that the holiday belongs to all of the Presidents. Just remember to look at the base word without changing anything first. Is it singular? Is it plural? Then decide how you will make it possessive. There is more about that topic here.

Grammar Giggle – Monday Or Thursday?

This was a Facebook post from our local news station. I was trying to figure out exactly when the space station would be visible in my area when I noticed that one place said Monday and one place said Thursday in the same story. The correct answer is that it was Thursday, but it was also confusing.

Grammar Giggle – Unites States of America

I am not sharing this example to start any kind of political discussion and any political comment will be deleted. The purpose is to show another example of spell check doing its job and checking how words are SPELLED–just not PROOFREADING and checking for content. The headings, inside addresses, “Re:” lines, and, as in this case, “To:” lines (among others) of letters and documents aren’t often looked at once they have been typed, so they are the perfect place for typos to get through.

Another thing that doesn’t help with those types of errors is Word settings. So go to your Word, File, Options, Proofing, and UNCHECK “Ignore words in UPPERCASE.” That way, spell check will at least check headings and other pieces of your work that are in all caps for spelling errors.

Grammar Giggle – We Recieve Another Incorrect Receive

Twice in one week I’ve now seen this same error. This time it is in my Microsoft Outlook email. While the fact that my inbox is full will surprise no one who knows me, I’m not sure why it is so difficult for a company like Microsoft to spell “receive” correctly.

Grammar Giggle – “Recieve” High Praise When You Spell Receive Correctly

I found this typo on one of our state government pages. Although “receive” is spelled correctly in two places in the same paragraph, the first one is obviously wrong. It does take some time to read through what you’ve written but avoiding these kinds of errors is worth it.

Grammar Giggle – Employee Appreciate Day

This was in my email recently. It was correct in one place, but incorrect in the subject line of the email—which is where your reader looks first. It’s the same in a business letter, the subject line is more important than many believe. Always read that as you’re proofing your letter or email.