Hi fellow grammarphiles! Today the Grammar Cop has found two criminal newspaper ads, and one blooper from CNN.com. Wring your hands along with me…
- “Chateau XYZ is a prestigious senior’s residence whose charm is unequalled in the West Island.” There are actually three crimes here, but I’m combining them into one since they’ve all been committed by one offender. I’m giving you a break, Chateau XYZ! Okay, first of all: “senior’s residence”? Really? There is only ONE senior living in the entire building? The word should be plural – seniors’ residence.
The second bit of awfulness is “…whose charm…” The word “whose” refers to a person, not a thing or a place. It is, after all, derived from “who.” The sentence should reflect that, so it should be rewritten as, for example: “Chateau XYZ is a prestigious seniors’ residence; its charm is unequalled in the West Island.”
The third thing that bothers me in this statement is not really grammatical, but rather, well, personal. As an admitted cynic when it comes to reading ads, I immediately go into doubt mode when I read that the “charm” of this place is “unequalled in the West Island.” Oh yeah? I think to myself, what about A Restaurant? Or B Hotel? Or how about that other lovely seniors’ residence, C? If I were an advertiser I would try to avoid statements like that, which can cause immediate scoffing in people like me.
- This one’s easy. Comfort Meals are apparently “a convenient way to have a nutritional home-style meal.” No they’re not. A nutritious meal, yes. Nutritional, no. There is a difference; look ’em up. 😉
- “[It] was not concerned with blame or liability, which falls to a separate criminal investigation lead by Dutch prosecutors…” – CNN.com. No, it was led by them. The past tense of lead is led.
That wraps up our session for today;
I hope I haven’t led you astray.