Nouns seem like a basic concept in English, but like everything else in English grammar, they seem to confuse the heck out of most people. I broach this topic after watching a segment of Are You Smarter Than a Fifth Grader? (sadly, few adults are), which featured a question asking the contestant to name the […]
No really, but the headline sounded good. What actually happened was that a Dutch prince in line for the throne got caught in a scandal and had to renounce his succession to the throne. Then, seduced by the all-evil Wikipedia, he went to the site to silence the scandal–and got caught. Naughty, naughty prince!
I read recently that three-quarters of U.S. small businesses don’t have any employees or offices because they are one-person operations run from a desktop computer, or more recently, from a laptop on the go. A term has been coiled for these laptop businesspeople: Bedouins. Now, traditionally a Bedouin is a nomad in the desert, so […]
I forget whose credit card ad advises “don’t leave home without it,” but when it comes to Wikipedia, my advice is to leave everywhere without it. It’s just highly unreliable as a source of information. Since Wikipedia can be edited by anyone who registers with the site, its pages are constantly being “updated” by those with […]
I’m neither famous or successful, and thus Wikipedia–the open-source encyclopedia for the Web 2.0 generation–would never feature me in its pages. So unless fame or fortune descend upon me, I’m safe from the “slings and arrows of outrageous fortune” that can be an article in the pages of Wikipedia. The problem with [tag]Wikipeda[/tag], and the […]
When I’m vegetating, I like to watch baseball and food shows on TV, which brings up today’s topic. When one conjugates English verbs, the three basic forms are present, simple past and past participle. Thus when one conjugates swim, one gets swim, swam, swum. Applying that same logical pattern to swing, as in "to swing […]
We’ve looked at dependent and independent clauses in a previous Building Blocks. Now let’s look at [tag]relative clauses[/tag]. Specifically, let’s look at restrictive and nonrestrictive clauses, also known as essential and nonessential clauses. To define, a restrictive (essential) clause adds important information to a sentence and cannot be eliminated without changing the meaning of the […]
One of my students came across this great site on APA, but it includes links to other resources on English grammar, usage and writing. It’s a good resource to keep handy.
As I was driving around on business yesterday, I had my radio turned to [tag]ESPN[/tag], all sports, all talk. When the news segment came on at the half-hour and top-of-the-hour points, the announcer read this news bit not once, but at least twice (I am paraphrasing but this is damn close, and the clincher is […]
If I Did It, O.J. Simpson’s theoretical account of how he might (har de har har) have carried out the double murder of his ex-wife and her friend, soon will be available from Amazon.com after months of making the underground, black market rounds. In a strange twist, the family of murdered Nicole Brown Simpson companion […]