New Grammar Questions Answered System in Place


Because a lot of immature fools out there can’t handle the responsibility of free speech, I’ve deleted my grammar questions forum and instituted an e-mail form for you to send me your grammar questions.

All serious grammar questions will be answered by a posting on my main page.  Please send serious grammar questions only.  My delete button is quite functional, as it was with the now-defunct grammar forum.  Sad, sad, sad.

Categories: Grammar Sucks

4 Replies to “New Grammar Questions Answered System in Place”

  1. Hi there,

    I have a Russian penfriend and I help her with her English. She sends me an email and I correct it for her. Here is a sentence taken from her most recent email:

    ‘I have attached a Russian translation of my letter so you can compare what I have wanted to say with what I have managed to say’.

    This is how I corrected her sentence:

    ‘I have attached a Russian translation of my letter so you can compare what I wanted to say with what I managed to say’.

    She now wants an explanation of why she cannot use the present perfect in this sentence. I can’t offer her one so I was hoping that you could help?

    Kind regards,


  2. Hi
    Hoping you can help answer this one….

    This query is regarding a find-the-error grammar type question we used on an exam here in Japan. The sentence was, “It was the best soccer game she’s ever played in a long time.” The intended error was to remove “ever” since the removal of that word made a satisfactory sentence.

    Later, this item came into question by Japanese teachers who said the sentence was correct as stands, and I was horrified to see this construction widely used in blogs, “best ever…in a long time, funniest a long time, etc.” I hit the grammar books, but as always, it’s hard to find an example in a book of something that is wrong. I am hoping you can confirm the inaccuracy of this construction, even though it has apparently entered into the informal lexicon. Please cite any resources you find noteworthy….

    Many thanks….


  3. Hi,

    I have a question regarding the use of “which” vs. “that”. I’m not sure about the following sentence:

    “In the PRESSURE TRANSDUCER SELECTION MENU, toggle the CHANGE button to select the psi value that corresponds to the actual psi value of the sensors you installed”.

    Is it “that corresponds”, or “which corresponds”, and can you please explain why?


    1. Just found your comment/question–sorry. It’s easier to e-mail them to me. Anyway, the answer is that because it’s used in a restrictive clause. Restrictive clauses (using that) are also called essential clauses because you cannot remove them from the sentence, or the sentence will lose its meaning. Non-essential (aka non-restrictive) clauses are like parenthetical thoughts that can be removed from a sentence and it retains its meaning. “The boy, who was six years old, was on his way to school when he got run over by a tractor.” The age part doesn’t matter, so you can leave it out. Note that non-restrictive clauses are also set off by commas while restrictive clauses never are. (I used a poor example. I should’ve picked a sentence that uses which to show you the difference between which and that.)

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