Friday Follies #128 – Making Grammar Great Again, One Hyphen at a Time

Grammar glitches got you down? Stymied by spelling? The Grammar Cop is here to enlighten and – just maybe – entertain!

  1. “The sugar maple is the preferred tree that is tapped, but there is also the red maple, black maple, ash-leafed maple and silver maple…”
  2. “…to a more specific hypothesis, like ‘social media is alienating millennials.'”
  3. “…and a grand performance by one of Burkett’s ‘Great Theatrical Divas,’ which the audience got to choose from a selection of three of these divine divas, Esme Massengill, whose rather risqué number with a member of the audience certainly raised a lot of eyebrows, not to mention gales of laughter.”



  1. Why would you say “there is” followed by a bunch of items? The answer is, you wouldn’t! It should say: there are also the red maple, black maple, ash…etc.
  2. Say it with me, and say it loud: MEDIA is PLURAL. (The Grammar Cop gets testy about this because it comes up so often.) Media is a Latin word we have co-opted. The singular is medium. The plural is media. Since media is plural, the verb must be in its plural form to agree, so the phrase should be social media are alienating millennials.
  3. Arghh! This is only part of a way-too-long sentence, which I didn’t want to quote entirely because it made me ill, okay? 😀  You can see how awful it is. Right? Er, right? It has to be entirely rewritten. I would break it up and change it to this: …and a grand performance by one of Burkett’s “Great Theatrical Divas.” The choice of divine diva was up to the audience, and in the show I attended, the ‘winner’ was Esme Massengill, whose rather risqué number with a member of the audience certainly raised eyebrows and evoked gales of laughter. (Notice: you don’t “raise” gales of laughter.)

Now the Grammar Cop must rest and recharge her editing batteries for next week. See you then!

14 thoughts on “Friday Follies #128 – Making Grammar Great Again, One Hyphen at a Time

  1. Hmmm, now I am wondering if I ever used media as a singular and not a plural? I need a few lashes if I did, as I should have known better! I hate when I make a grammatical error and don’t catch it – for the WordPress followers, I can fix it before most people read it, but my e-mail subscribers … that’s another story. Sometimes I want to link an earlier blog post to a current one, or pass along a post to someone and I’ll re-read it and find an error. I think blog writing is like writing a term paper. You write it, you look at it several times, and you should close out of the document and come back later, as there is often something that you missed, especially if you’ve staring at a screen for hours. Fellow blogger Ann Mehrling recommended this site as we often chit chat off WordPress and the subject of grammar has come up a few times. So, here I am … Linda Schaub

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Well hi there, Linda! So happy to meet you – I must remember to thank Anne (with the “e” on the end) :-D! I think all our written output, especially email, should be sent out as if attached by a bungee cord. If we spot an error, ZAP, back it comes to us to fix immediately!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Please do thank Anne (with the “e”) for sending me here, even though I have just written her and thanked her as well. I have only a handful of people I write e-mails to … one is Ann Marie Stevens and the other Anne Mehrling. I have to be careful of the auto-complete when composing an e-mail and to ensure I spell their names correctly as well. Well, I messed up here though. I agree about the bungee cord – I hate seeing boo boos … they haunt me!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. That’s a great name for a movie – The Haunting of the Boo-boos.
      Thanked Anne. 🙂
      Yeah, emailing is time-consuming. One has to um, ration one’s time carefully… otherwise one is drawn into (as my boyfriend calls it) the Facebook rabbit-hole, for instance.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I’ve been blogging here for five years as of February 11th. Up until last Thanksgiving, I had around 15-17 people reading my blog. Most of them were e-mail subscribers. Suddenly, someone who wrote a travel blog found my site (I never used tags at all, just wrote for the pleasure) and they told two friends, and they told two friends … like that old shampoo commercial. Suddenly I had a whole new world of people to interact with – it’s been a tad overwhelming and I’m just now adjusting. It has been great and I have met people from all over the world. I must admit I’ve hardly been on Facebook these days. I have friends I’ve not seen in decades and connected through Facebook, and that is their only means of communication – they’ve abandoned e-mail, and I don’t even get a Christmas card anymore. Guess snail-mail is passe (imagine the diacritical mark).

        Liked by 1 person

        1. WOW, what a transformation you’ve gone through, then! That’s how it goes, word of mouth, and then, ka-powie! I have readers from 107 countries now. Well, most of them only gave me one reader, but still!! Heh, my country list impresses me, what can I tell you! Today I just got my 301st follower – YOU. 😀 Ok i gotta have a lil nap now. Back later, girl! xox

          Liked by 1 person

        2. I am happy to be your 301st Ellie. I was nodding off a few hours ago while doing something boring for work. Before all the followers and me following back and spending a significant amount of time in Reader, I went to bed earlier and got up in the morning, checked in at work and then did household tasks before going outside (to walk or shovel) and now I’m spending more and more time here. I have to get it to a manageable phase. It is exciting … the walking and the blogging are two wonderful presents I have given myself. Nice chatting with you – have a good evening.

          Liked by 1 person

        3. I zonked out, had a good night, thanks! Going out soon with pal for coffee/shopping. (Just got my tax refund. Woo hoo! 😀 ) Ttyl, am going to contact you via your blog.

          Liked by 1 person

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