Friday Follies #253 – Making Grammar Great Again, One Hyphen at a Time

Glitches, goofs, and gaffes! Oh my! Come and see the Grammar Cop’s haul o’ the week!

  1. Stimulus talks hurdle toward a key deadline (headline in major newspaper newsletter)
  2. Despite the seeming snub, Dr. Biden appears to be unphased and is said to be assembling her staff as she prepares to set the agenda for the East Wing.
  3. It is a tradition for the outgoing president and first lady to call their replacements right after an election. Only time will tell if the Trump’s will ultimately take that step.

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And the corrections:

  1. The word “hurdle” is incorrect in this context. A “hurdle” means an “obstacle.” What is intended here is hurtle, i.e. travelling incredibly fast. (Although in reality the talks have been going at a snail’s pace!)
  2. “Unphased”? No. The proper word here is unfazed, which means undeterred.
  3. Here is an unnecessary, undesired, and wholly incorrect apostrophe in “the Trump’s”! When you want to make a name plural, you simply add an s (or es, after a name already ending in s). (If you want to make the name possessive, that’s a different story. For a plural possessive, put the apostrophe after the s: The Trumps’ tendency to lie. The Trumps’ so-called wealth. 😁) (Note that “president” and “first lady” only need to be capitalized when they are in front of the person’s name, as a title: President Kennedy. First Lady Michelle Obama.)

Fun fact (Christmas bonus): Is it “just deserts” or “just desserts”? The Grammar Cop sadly confesses that for her whole life, she’s been spelling it wrong! See: https://www.merriam-webster.com/words-at-play/just-deserts-or-just-desserts, where it says, in part:

Despite its pronunciation, just deserts, with one s, is the proper spelling for the phrase meaning “the punishment that one deserves.” The phrase is even older than dessert, using an older noun version of desert meaning “deserved reward or punishment,” which is spelled like the arid land, but pronounced like the sweet treat.

Live and learn! 😄

Have a safe and merry Christmas! See you for a Boxing Day instalment of Friday Follies!

4 thoughts on “Friday Follies #253 – Making Grammar Great Again, One Hyphen at a Time

  1. 1-Apparently using a dictionary to find the correct word was a hurdle for the writer.
    2-The writer was going through a phase and was unfazed by proper word usage.
    3-The Apostrophe Catastrophe strikes again. The think the Bidens will be fine without the phone call. And the Trumps can step off.

    Guess what?! I also thought it was desserts!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. 1) Indeed! Apparently, even reaching a level of intelligence necessary to *think* of using a dictionary is a hurdle!
      2) Their phase did not faze them!
      3) Agree with all three!

      Ha, I’ll bet many of us were tricked by the odd pronunciation!

      Liked by 1 person

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