Thursday, April 25, 2019
8:04 am pdt
Wanna Hear a Joke?
Has anybody ever started a joke by saying, "I'm a racist, but..."?
Wednesday, April 17, 2019
10:05 am pdt
Fun with Commonly Confused Words: of and 've
OK, so "'ve" is not technically a word, but the contraction of a word – have. The problem with these two words is that when you hear a phrase like "could've,"
it sounds like "could of," so that's the way you spell it, which means you now no longer have an actual verb in
your verb phrase, but a preposition. And, grammatically speaking, that's not going to work at all.
there are very few times in the English language where "have" is used in a contraction. For all
practical purposes, there are only four and a half words that are commonly contracted with "have"– should,
would, could, might, and n't – the contracted form of "not."
When we speak, and when some of us
write, we say things like, "You shouldn't've done that." And, of course, what
we're saying you shouldn't've done is following the "n't" with "of," such as "wouldn't of."
Once again, what you should be saying is "would not have." Or, if you don't mind writing
a bit informally, go ahead and use the double contraction.
There's a pretty simple rule here: Anytime you use
one of those words (should, could, would, might, not) and you follow it with "of," it's wrong. If
this is a problem for you, put those words on a Post-it and stick it on your computer monitor.
sure, there are other words you can contract with "have," such as "will've" and "shall've,"
but, seriously! When was the last time you said "will've"? And you have to be legally British to say
Wednesday, April 10, 2019
9:14 am pdt
"Lay" and "lie" are two of the most confused words in the English language, and
that's because they're... well... confusing.
"To lay" means "to put, or to place."
As such, it requires a direct object. For instance: Please lay the gun
on the table. "To lie" means "to recline." As such, it does not
require a direct object. For instance: I want you to lie down. ("down"
in that sentence is not a direct object because it is not a noun; it is an adverb that tells "where.")
itself, that's not too confusing. But then, because you can be your own direct object, you can always place
yourself in bed, as in: Lay yourself down.
Never mind that "lie" can also mean "to be untruthful,"
and that "lay" can also mean "aspect" (such as "the lay of the land").
just the present tense. If you really want to be confused, the past tense for "lie" is the present
tense for "lay." And it just gets sillier from there on out, what with "laid" and "lain,"
especially because you can get laid, but in that sense you don't necessarily need to be lying anywhere, but you may have to
be lying to get laid... but I digress. In short, the best way to know which is which is to use a chart.
But then, anytime you have to use a chart to understand which form of a word to use... yeah. It's
easy to see why these words are so often confused.
As a quick review, participial forms of any verb, be they past or present, require helping verbs. ("participial" = adjective; "participle" = noun) For instance:
The gun had been
laid on the table, and the body was lying on the floor. The past participial form of any verb should not be used
– ever – without a helping verb. You
can say: I had seen it. But you really shouldn't say:
I seen it... well, not if you don't want to sound uneducated. On the other hand, you can use the present participial form of a verb without
a helping verb, but when you do, it's no longer a verb. For instance: Lying on the bed is my
favourite pastime. In that sentence, what
you are saying is: This, here, is my favourite
pastime. And that makes the "This"
– lying – the subject of the sentence, which means it's a noun. And that's why a sentence like: Moving to Hollywood... isn't a sentence at all. It's a fragment, because it has no subject or main verb: I will be moving to Hollywood... on the other hand, does.
8:25 am pdt
Quote of the Morning:
you can't smell it doesn't mean it don't stink. (The Reverend Bob Bidwell)
Thursday, March 28, 2019
1:07 pm pdt
of the Afternoon:
"Technology is not hurting children. It's parents' inability or unwillingness to control their
children's use of technology that is hurting children. But then, that's probably ture for anything." Earl