Beyond the Rhetoric


Posts Tagged ‘word choice’

Idiomatica: One and the Same

November 18th, 2016

What you may have noticed with several of the Grammar 101 and Idiomatica posts here on the blog is that many errors stem from the same central issue. People are used to hearing certain words or phrases spoken in casual conversation, but they might not write them nearly as often. Then, thanks to the wonderful […]

Grammar 101: Verses and Versus

November 11th, 2016

Here we go again with a couple of words that sound exactly the same but have entirely different meanings. It’s an honest mistake, since only a single letter separates verses from versus. Adding in the fact that neither word is written all that often, plus the much more widespread use of the abbreviation vs. instead, […]

Grammar 101: Emigrate and Immigrate

November 3rd, 2016

With the US Presidential election right around the corner, and foreign ownership of Vancouver real estate a perpetual hot topic, we get bombarded with talk of immigration policies all the time. People move from country to country all the time, sometimes temporarily, sometimes permanently. And it’s important that you understand the difference between what it […]

Grammar 101: Hunger Pangs or Hunger Pains

October 20th, 2016

Here is another one of those situations involving words that don’t normally come up every day. And even when they do, they are much more commonly spoken than they are written, leading to a very common misinterpretation and spelling mistake. This is the case if you want to talk about a man’s grisly (not grizzly) […]

Grammar 101: Bemused and Amused

October 13th, 2016

It’s natural to assume that similar-looking words must be related in some way. Headphones, earphones and earbuds all serve fundamentally the same function. You’ll probably find happiness at the happiest place on Earth. And while terms like critique and criticism might be connected in some way, other pairs of words vary drastically in meaning. Bemused […]

Grammar 101: Bear or Bare with Me?

September 9th, 2016

You may have noticed that many of the most common grammatical mistakes involve homophones, or words that sound the same (or similar) but have different meanings. That’s why someone might say that they’re going to make due in the lightening storm when they should really be talking about how to make do in the lightning […]

Grammar 101: Lightning and Lightening

August 30th, 2016

When Muhammad Ali said that he “handcuffed lightning,” he was not referring to dying his hair blonde. He was referring to a fast flash of great electrical power that he was able to harness and tame for his own purposes, speaking symbolically of his boxing prowess. He did not handcuff “lightening.” It’s just one letter, […]

Grammar 101: Electric vs. Electronic

August 23rd, 2016

Why is it that we can ride around on electric bikes, but we play on an electronic drum set? Why can we shave with an electric razor, but we send messages through electronic mail? The difference between the two terms may sound rather inconsequential. It might feel rather arbitrary, but there is a clear distinction […]