Tag Archive: grammar

Mar 04

Happy National Grammar Day!

On this National Grammar Day, try to throw into your conversation one excruciatingly correct usage that nobody ever uses, just to mess with people. Announce your presence by saying, “It is I!” Ask “to whom” you should send some paperwork. And smile! It’s like eating a burger off the good china just to remind yourself …

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Jan 22

Learn from others’ mistakes

It’s not difficult to find online examples of spelling, grammar and usage fails that have been run up the flagpole for mockery like somebody’s polka-dot underpants. To some, this seems mean; let’s face it, even the most verbally careful and precise of us has hastily, furiously or drunkenly dashed off a note or blog post that would …

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Jan 15

To learn how something works, take it apart

As an adolescent, I learned to diagram sentences. People that age rarely know what that means anymore. When you diagram a sentence, you create a kind of map of it, like a wiring diagram or a flow chart, that illustrates exactly how all the words in that sentence relate to each other and what roles …

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Jul 04

A new revolution: The singular they

One of the active fronts in grammar currently is the growing acceptance–or even requirement, in some cases–of the word “they” to refer to a person of unknown or possibly nonbinary gender. Newspapers and other publishers are struggling to come up with a policy or style about this, while strict-constructionist grammarians shriek with horror and fumble …

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Jan 26

A new place to find everything Sam

Hi, I’m humorist and former Pittsburgh Post-Gazette columnist Samantha Bennett, and this is my website. While it’s still got that new-website smell, I may be a bit cautious and irregular about posting to it. I beg your patience. I am an advocate for good grammar, punctuation and usage — as long as none of that gets …

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