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And I thought I was picky about apostrophes . . .

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Madeleine
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Post by Madeleine » Wed February 4th, 2009, 5:54 pm

Oh the apostrophe thing drives me crazy - seen written in the window of a local cafe:

Sandwich's

My friend and I point out errors to each other when we see them, we're both a bit obsessed by the apostrophe's seemingly random use.

I saw the article about the placename - St Mark's etc losing the apostrophe, not sure what to make of it really. I used to see some appalling grammar where I used to work; I think some people may just have a mental block when it comes to this sort of thing as they are otherwise perfectly sane, fairly intelligent folk!

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LCW
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Post by LCW » Wed February 4th, 2009, 6:45 pm

:o :confused: :o :confused: I confess to being awful with apostrophes....and comas. I've gotten pretty decent at remembering to use them only to indicate possession and not a plural but I can never remember when to put one on the end of the word. :o :confused: :o :confused: :o :confused:
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Ludmilla
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Post by Ludmilla » Wed February 4th, 2009, 6:58 pm

I'm glad I'm not alone, LCW. I used to be at least competent, but the part of my brain that controls grammar and spelling has deteriorated considerably in the last ten years or so. It doesn't help being exposed to constantly shifting standards in corporate America (and the influence of globalization in our daily communications). Now my brain is just a mishmash of competing styles.

However, with that said, I'll also confess that I've never subscribed to the philosophy that language and its associated grammar are static. Culture is not static, why should language stubbornly lag behind? Familial and regional customs have a huge influence too.

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ellenjane
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Post by ellenjane » Wed February 4th, 2009, 7:14 pm

I confess to having defaced a sign that used apostrophes incorrectly. It said "Employee's Only," and was made out of little stick-on letters. I just scraped the apostrophe off. My sister was at the same business a couple of years later, and reported that the sign still said "Employee s Only." :p

I'm kind of embarrassed about it now, but I was 16 and on a school trip. I suppose that there are many worse things I could have been getting up to.

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MLE (Emily Cotton)
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Post by MLE (Emily Cotton) » Wed February 4th, 2009, 10:08 pm

I was raised by a grammar Nazi. And although I laughed through Truss' book, and I try to write correctly myself, I just let other people's grammar be. There are so many more important things to concentrate on in the world.

I enjoy reading Shakespeare in the original, and I speak that way when I am at a renaissance faire, but I don't think we should all go back to proper Shakespearean English!
Forms of expression evolve; they are different from culture to culture, and from decade to decade. We are better off looking past the form to see the intent and the heart of the originator.

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Leyland
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Post by Leyland » Thu February 5th, 2009, 2:50 am

[quote=""boswellbaxter""]The Krispy Kreme lady doesn't know what she's missing. Anyway, as the alternative in most parts of the country is Dunkin' Donuts (at least it has the apostrophe for the missing "g"), she might as well surrender and buy herself a box of the glazed. Yummy.[/quote]
Us ignernt southerners been eatin them Krispy Kremes since we was knee high to a palmetto bug! Gosh y'all, DDs is better than KKs any ole day! ;)

When I'm producing financial statements for clients, I proof and re-add everything. Then I hand them off to a co-worker to check it again. There is no excuse for carelessness like that in the public accounting world (let's not go into certain infamous corporate accounting schemes that brought down certain firms), or when I submit a research paper to a professor. But casual communications are fair game now.
We are the music makers, And we are the dreamers of dreams ~ Arthur O'Shaughnessy, Ode

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Rowan
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Post by Rowan » Thu February 5th, 2009, 4:13 pm

Here's a prime example of why spelling is important...

Image

Granted it's on a body part that's probably going to be covered most of the time, but still...
Last edited by Rowan on Thu February 5th, 2009, 4:16 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Volgadon
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Post by Volgadon » Thu February 5th, 2009, 5:34 pm

[quote=""MLE""]I was raised by a grammar Nazi. And although I laughed through Truss' book, and I try to write correctly myself, I just let other people's grammar be. There are so many more important things to concentrate on in the world.

I enjoy reading Shakespeare in the original, and I speak that way when I am at a renaissance faire, but I don't think we should all go back to proper Shakespearean English!
Forms of expression evolve; they are different from culture to culture, and from decade to decade. We are better off looking past the form to see the intent and the heart of the originator.[/quote]

Proper Shakespearian English is anything but. Never intended for day to day conversation either.

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juleswatson
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Post by juleswatson » Fri February 6th, 2009, 4:05 pm

[quote=""Ludmilla""]
However, with that said, I'll also confess that I've never subscribed to the philosophy that language and its associated grammar are static. Culture is not static, why should language stubbornly lag behind? Familial and regional customs have a huge influence too.[/quote]

I agree about the fact language changes - I mean, we can see that all around us now with new technology, plus looking back on historical texts. Language is a reflection of whoever is currently using it, and therefore will and should change as people and culture changes. But it also records the past, so people get upset about "correct" usage being ignored. Apostrophes actually do perform a valid function, though, and without them chaos can ensue. Having said all that, I had a regular 1970s Australian upbringing, and since Australians are notorious for being "slack" with language (sorry other Aussies), my grammar has sometimes been less than perfect. With my first two books, a lovely old teacher from the US carefully compiled all my grammatical errors and sent them to me. Some things she said were correct and my mistake, some stemmed from the casual way my generation spoke compared to hers (language changing in action) and changes in teaching practices (standards, some might say). I hoped that my editors might pick up the bigger things, but then, they must have had the same "improper" standards as me! Anyway, she did improve my grammar :D
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Rowan
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Post by Rowan » Mon February 9th, 2009, 4:17 pm

Well the woman who hates Krispy Kreme's name might not have to worry about them after this year. I just saw them listed in an article on Yahoo Finance about companies that might not survive 2009. :D

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