Friday Follies #155 – Making Grammar Great Again, One Hyphen at a Time

Arrgghh! The Grammar Cop is late again!! Sorry FF fans, the days just seem to fly by way too fast!! Anyway, there is now a Post-It® note stuck on the bottom of my computer screen. Eye roll. Okay! On to this week’s errors!

  1. “However, 15 percent of the registered voters in the United States amount to 25 million citizens.”
  2. “Hospitalization rates for children with asthma peaks 17 days after Labour Day.”
  3. “The plaintiffs “mandate” comes from the fact that they all bear a title that brings with it rights and responsibilities.”


The corrections:

  1. This one’s easy to slip by us. It’s the missing s on the verb, “amount.” The reason we need that singular ending is because it has to agree with the subject of the sentence, “15 percent,” which is singular. (And no, the subject of the sentence is not “voters.”)
  2. Here’s a subject-verb agreement problem again – we may call it a disagreement. 😁 But it’s the opposite to #1 above. This time the verb “peaks” should not have an “s.” It must be peak, in the plural form to match the subject, “rates,” which is plural.
  3. This sentence features a missing apostrophe. Do you see where it’s needed? Here’s a hint: “plaintiffs.”  Now: should it be plaintiff’s, or plaintiffs’? Let’s see: we use ‘s when it’s one person possessing something. We use s’ when it’s more than one person. Which do you think is meant here? The clue is in the “they” which is in here: “…the fact that they all…” So there is more than one plaintiff. Therefore it should say plaintiffs’. Case closed! 😁

The Grammar Cop hopes you can forgive her for her tardiness. Again! And she has faith that the Friday Follies Post-It® note on her computer will prevent another lapse.



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