Proofreading Service - Pain in the English
Proofreading Service - Pain in the English

Your Pain Is Our Pleasure

24-Hour Proofreading Service—We proofread your Google Docs or Microsoft Word files. We hate grammatical errors with passion. Learn More

Proofreading Service - Pain in the English
Proofreading Service - Pain in the English

Your Pain Is Our Pleasure

24-Hour Proofreading Service—We proofread your Google Docs or Microsoft Word files. We hate grammatical errors with passion. Learn More

Username

providencejim

Member Since

June 17, 2010

Total number of comments

61

Total number of votes received

74

Bio

Retired, did some college English teaching and other things. Lived many years in a state often used as a comparison in discussing a rather large but not gigantic entity, e.g.: The oil spill now covers an area the size of Rhode Island. Now live in the green state of Vermont.

Latest Comments

Julia S. U., concerning your final observation, I learned (and one still sees the rule, as here: http://www.grammar-monster.com/lessons/semicolons_before_transitional_phrases.htm) that "therefore" and "however" (when used to link independent clauses) require a semicolon before and a comma after. I like that rule as I think a pause greater than a comma's before the second clause makes sense in those instances.

Oops, how embarrassing--I left out the comma in the title of Lynne Truss's book, _Eats, Shoots & Leaves_ (and the ampersand).

porsche, I can agree that getting rid of a rule that mandates a semicolon before "but" and then a comma has been a good thing (and as a retired guy I have to say I never ran into that rule myself). I think simplifying punctuation is fine as long as it doesn't lose useful information in the communication process. Commas and semicolons help readers when used intelligently and hinder them when not. And it seems to me that many writers use "therefore" and "however" when a simple "so" or "but" would do the job (and a preceding comma is then perfectly OK).

I think the popularity of Lynne Truss's book _Eats Shoots and Leaves_ is evidence that I am not alone in decrying the loss of respect for correct use of the comma (and the semicolon as well).

Actually, bubbha, I don't like what's become typical of writers today, using "therefore" after a comma rather than after a semicolon (and then omitting the comma after "therefore"). E.g., "I don't like either candidate, therefore I won't vote." Should be: "I don't like either candidate; therefore, I won't vote." Grammar Girl has a good paragraph on this--until, in my opinion, at the very end:

>> Finally, you use a semicolon when you use a conjunctive adverb to join two main clauses. Conjunctive adverbs are words such as however, therefore, and indeed, and they "usually show cause and effect, sequence, contrast, comparison, or other relationships" (1). For example, “The aardvark is on vacation; therefore, Squiggly has to carry the weight in this episode.” (The comma after the conjunctive adverb is optional.)

“went missing/gone missing”?

  • July 24, 2012, 7:17am

nuffsaid, did you bother to read the comments above, especially Warsaw Will's? We are dealing with an idiomatic expression that now appears well ensconced in American English, after being so in British English for a long time. It does not "sound terrible" to my ears (in contrast with, for example, "those kind," which folks on TV say regularly). Please try to get over it ;-).

Referent of “one”

  • July 4, 2012, 12:16pm

Although I agree generally with dave's response, to be more accurate I would say "form of melody" is a noun (not prepositional) phrase to which "one" refers.

“It is what it is”

  • June 30, 2012, 2:12pm

jonthecelt, I know someone with Crohn's and sympathize. And I can readily see how appropriate "it is what it is" can be for your condition. I cannot understand why some posters have such a negative reaction to the locution (which, by the way in reference to prior comments, really has nothing to do with any pope or John Galt, so beloved of myopic Ayn Randites).

“went missing/gone missing”?

  • February 25, 2012, 10:38am

dot, please don't SHOUT. Now try to apply your view to the quote in my Dec. 17 post, "...a New Jersey woman who went missing in May 2010." How would you do that? At any rate, there is simply no argument against what has clearly become common usage in the press (and elsewhere). It's like arguing that gas stations should advertise "Self-Service" rather than "Self-Serve." One can, but where does it get you?

“It is what it is”

  • February 4, 2012, 9:29am

Well, william2010bc, I'm not sure we should be getting back to "basics" with someone who omits necessary punctuation in his post (should be "let's" and "basics, please" and "conditions are," or has issues with verbs (should be "which seem to be" and "If it were black slang"). Then there's the gratuitous note of racism at the end. And that's not even dealing with the core of your post, which clarifies nothing.

“went missing/gone missing”?

  • December 17, 2011, 4:28pm

We need to put this issue to rest. Again today I find the idiom used on a US news site, msnbc.msn.com: "By NBC New York
Police have identified the remains found on Monday in a Long Island marsh as those of Shannan Gilbert, a New Jersey woman who went missing in May 2010." I suspect it's become just as common now in American English as in British English, and, as it violates no rule of grammar I'm aware of, we all just need to accept it. As Warsaw Will says, don't use it if you don't like it, but don't put down those who do.

Questions

“and” or “but” followed by a comma June 29, 2012
“Over-simplistic” September 12, 2013
“Based out of”: Why? November 19, 2013
agree the terms March 29, 2017