Measured words

Today I saw a National Geographic article that contained this sentence: “The sound of airflow grows, reaching a ferocious decibel.” A ferocious decibel? Ummmm, no. We’ll be generous and assume that National Geographic is skimping on copy editors and that a word or two accidentally fell off. A decibel is a unit of measurement telling … More Measured words

One lump or two?

English tends to mash words together over time, which is how base ball became base-ball and then baseball. Our job as writers, though, is to reflect the language that most people use right now, not to resurrect the past or lead the masses toward a glorious future. The way the English¬†plays out in 2016, you’ll … More One lump or two?

Order, please

Arranging the same words in a different order can change the whole meaning of a sentence. This week I saw someone addressing the forlorn supporters of Bernie Sanders: “Most of you weren’t even Democrats, like Bernie.” As written, it looks like the author is saying that Bernie was a Democrat, but his supporters weren’t. What … More Order, please