Beyond the Rhetoric

 
 
 

Posts Tagged ‘word choice’

Prunes Are Not What You Think They Are

April 27th, 2015

Take a grape, dehydrate it, and you’ve got yourself a raisin. What we might call a golden raisin, folks in some other parts of the world might call a sultana. Dry a particular variety of grape and you get a currant. In every instance, you are referring to a dried grape when you talk about […]

Grammar 101: Aisle and Isle

April 23rd, 2015

It never ceases to amaze me how many of these Grammar 101 posts are inspired by status updates on Facebook. Today is no exception. Now, it’s important to note that I’m not faulting any of my Facebook friends for making such errors, per se, so long as they endeavor to avoid making the same mistakes […]

Grammar 101: A Nervous Tick

April 17th, 2015

Having an automatic spell checking utility built into your web browser, app or mobile device can be a very helpful thing. It can help you catch those random errors and typos that you may make. It can also give you a false sense of confidence that you are spelling your words correctly. This is perhaps […]

Grammar 101: Allergic vs. Allergenic

April 9th, 2015

The words “allergic” and “allergenic” are both related to allergies, but they have different meanings and cannot be used interchangeably. This is similar to what we find with word pairs like venomous and poisonous. A snake might be venomous (active administration of poison), while certain plants might be poisonous (passive administration of poison). So, what’s […]

Grammar 101: On Collective Nouns

March 17th, 2015

In your writing, it is important to be mindful of subject-verb agreement. A singular noun corresponds to one form of a verb, while a plural noun correponds with a different form of a verb. He chooses, but they choose. Joan runs, but the cats run. This can be complicated with the introduction of collective nouns. […]

Grammar 101: “I Am Bias” (Biased)

March 3rd, 2015

A recurring theme here with the Grammar 101 series on Beyond the Rhetoric is that many of the errors people make with grammar are caused by the combination of two factors. First, there are many phrases and idioms that are spoken more often than they are written. Second, the ubiquity of spell check and autocorrect […]

Grammar 101: Using “Per Se”

February 20th, 2015

Having a spell checker integrated into your operating system, word processor or web browser seems like such a great idea. You can easily pick up on your errors and typos as you go along, ensuring that you have the right spelling for everything you write… except when you come across a term like “per se” […]

Grammar 101: Aw, Aww and Awe

February 10th, 2015

You don’t have to look much further than your typical Facebook, Twitter or Instagram feed before you see a picture of a cat or a dog doing something adorable. Or maybe there are some cute animals at the zoo that elicit followers to go, “Awe, that’s so cute.” Or is it “Aww, that’s so cute” […]