Friday Follies #226 – Making Grammar Great Again, One Hyphen at a Time

Nice to “see” you again, FFers! The Grammar Cop hopes you’re in the mood for something light: annoying English-language infractions, ready for an easy fix.

  1. Melania Trump, however, promptly honored Sen. McCain, uttering the very words her husband seemed so loathe to speak.
  2. Being that he was just five years old when Bobby decided to drastically change both of their lives, it’s likely that Julian doesn’t remember much of his childhood.
  3. Also, an interesting fact is that there have been 7 lions that were used to create the MGM intro, the current one, who’s name is Leo, has appeared in most of the movies since 1957.



The corrections:

  1. Here we have a common misspelling. See it? The word “loathe” should only have an “e” at the end of it when it’s a verb: I loathe math. I loathe cigarette smoke. It makes the “th” sound soft, as in “the” or “they.” However, the way it’s used here is wrong. It should be loath. He is loath to speak. I am loath to take a math course. Here, loath means “reluctant,” and is an adjective modifying He or I. The th sound in loath is different: it’s like the th in both or hath.
  2. When I taught remedial English I used to wince at this all the time. It’s a grammar crime like no other! “Being that” is not a proper English construction. I don’t know where people get that from! It’s usually young people who use it, and I wish someone would enlighten them. (If you have any Generation Z youngsters in your family, please show them this post! 😄😉) We have perfectly suitable substitutes for the odious “being that”: Since he was; because he was; As he was. Let’s use them.
  3. This sentence is a clunky  mess. Here’s a rewrite: [An interesting fact is that] there have been seven lions used in the MGM intro. Leo, the current one, has appeared before most movies since 1957. The phrase in brackets might not be necessary; the sentence could actually start with There have been seven…  We could even simply say instead: Seven lions have been used in the MGM intro. Leo…  By the way, “who’s name is Leo” is wrong – it should say whose name… By the way #two, the rule regarding numbers used in prose is that those less than 10 must be spelled out. That’s why 7 should be seven in the above sentence. (Also, whenever a sentence begins with a number, it should be spelled out.)

Almost 12 weeks have passed since the lockdown. How are you holding up? The Grammar Cop would feel a tad better without seeing such boo-boos as those above.

We wish for more justice in America – especially for Americans of colour.



4 thoughts on “Friday Follies #226 – Making Grammar Great Again, One Hyphen at a Time

  1. 1-I am loath to think of the orange one and his wife because I loathe them.
    2-“Being that” is definitely loathsome.
    3-Owls everywhere are lamenting the wrong “who”. They loathe when people make that mistake. 😀

    Liked by 1 person

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