Friday Follies #168 – Making Grammar Great Again, One Hyphen at a Time

After a tough week rounding up many messy language missteps (say that 10 times fast), the Grammar Cop is ready to share a few with you, her dear loyal readers.

  1. “The exit of Brafman echos a pattern that the now imprisoned Bill Cosby had of pink slipping attorneys when he didn’t get the rulings or results he sought in his legal battles over the…”
  2. “Sparks’ grandfather was a farmhand who by the early 1950s, had saved enough money to buy swathes of Rio Grande Valley farmland that…”
  3. “Gadi, aged 35, wants to donate one of his own kidney’s to help save his father’s life.”


The corrections:

  1. First, the spelling mistake: the plural of “echo” is echoes. It takes an ‘es ending, just like potatoes, tomatoes, and ratioes. No, that should be ratios. Never mind. You’ll get it. 😁 Also, did you catch the two cases of hyphen-o-phobia? It should say now-imprisoned Bill Cosby, and pink-slipping attorneys. Do you see why? Never mind. You’ll get it.
  2. Two mistakes here: a missing comma, and a case of wrong-worditis. The comma should go after “who,” to help set off the phrase “by the early 1950s.” So it should say: …was a farmhand who, by the early 1950s, had…  The wrong word is “swathes,” which should be swaths. Some may argue with me. But some would be wrong. 😁
  3. Did you spot the offending apostrophe? What the heck is it doing there, stuck in between “kidney” and “s”? The writer is obviously confused because, hey it is possessive – it’s his own kidney! But no. Here, in “one of his own [two] kidneys” – kidneys is plural. His kidney isn’t possessing anything! If you talked about “his kidney’s hat,” then you could insert the apostrophe, because then it would be possessive. 🙄

My kidneys are now going to hang up their hats for the week. Their work is done!

4 thoughts on “Friday Follies #168 – Making Grammar Great Again, One Hyphen at a Time

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