Friday Follies #69 – 3 articles that make me go “Arghhh”

“3 articles”? Yes, that’s what I said, unlike the usual “3 mistakes.” Why? Because the Grammar Cop found three articles, all in The Suburban, our (in)famous weekly paper, chock-full of errors. Sigh. Here’s the list of winners (losers?) in this week’s bonanza of bloopers.

The errors first:

  1. In an article about a Montreal borough company called St. Laurent donating 480 computers to needy residents: The caption under a photo of donors and volunteers lists one Francesco Miele as “acting mayor of St. Laurent.” However, in another caption under a second photo, the wording includes “St. Laurent Mayor Alan DeSousa.” As well, in the article text itself, there’s this: “…stated Mayor Alan DeSousa.”
  2. In the editor-in-chief’s editorial: “…in order to exit it’s decades old rut and start growing.” and “…some three and a half years ago” as well as “to accomodate investors” and “…revenue sharing apportionment between…” There is also a typo but I’m overlooking that. It just makes me grit my teeth harder.
  3. This one takes the prize. It’s a column by a dietician – who should stick to her day job. I counted 10 mistakes in a piece of less than 500 words… never mind the typos! The list includes everything from missing hyphens in compound adjectives (over indulge; sure fire; low fat; health conscious; whole grain) to misspellings (chose for choose) and even a combo: “over poor” – see corrections below for the fix of that last one!

The corrections:

  1. Any fact-checkers working at The Suburban? Apparently not. Alan DeSousa is the mayor of St. Laurent. No ifs, ands, buts, or actings.
  2. Not “it’s”! It should be its, which is possessive. “Decades old rut” should be decades-old rut. “Some three and a half years ago” should be some three-and-a-half years ago. The abominable misspelling, “accomodate,” should be accommodate. (Many people get this wrong. There’s an easy trick to remembering the right spelling. Double date! Everything is doubled, before the date. “Everything” refers to the consonants, not the vowels.) “Revenue sharing” should be revenue-sharing.
  3. Where to start! Let’s just list the corrections: over-indulge; sure-fire; low-fat; health-conscious; whole-grain. Note that almost all of these were used as compound adjectives, followed by the noun. (If used after a noun, mind you, they wouldn’t need a hyphen. Trust me. 😉 ) Over-indulge was simply a verb. Choose should have been used in her sentence, which should read, Only choose whole-grain dishes that… As for “over poor”? This gaffe takes first prize! The sentence as she wrote it, referring to alcohol consumption, reads: “People tend to over poor by 12 per cent.” So she’s not talking about people being so poor that they can’t afford to drink booze. Nope, she meant over-pour. Not all dictionaries list this, I found. But I like this entry: In this instance, I’d say the hyphen is optional. For the Grammar Cop, that’s quite a concession. 😀

I hope you’ve made it this far in my post, because I want to wish all you loyal readers a very happy holiday season! Don’t over-pour! Friday Follies will return Friday, January 6, 2017 with a whole new batch o’ boo-boos.

6 thoughts on “Friday Follies #69 – 3 articles that make me go “Arghhh”

  1. I’m so glad you showed the proper way to write “three-and-a-half”. GUILTY!!!! I have gotten that kind of thing wrong recently It’s one of the things I probably knew at one time, but I’m slipping. I must never miss a grammar cop post!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Oh Anne, I think you’re in good company! I see these types of mistakes very often. The Grammar Cop is something of an annoying nitpicker, see… You can count on her to set you straight! 😀 ‘See’ you on January 6th! Happy Holidays!

      Liked by 1 person

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