It's 101 degrees in New York today. Perhaps a plunge into the icy waters of grammar will cool us down! Here's a great email from sligers118:
This isn't exactly having my grammar corrected in an essay, but I just had a small question I was wondering if you'd maybe like to clarify for me. I'm not sure it even counts as grammar but... it's been niggling at me for a while, and I'd love a definitive answer.
Why do we care about grammar? Not because we're tight-lipped, red-pen-wielding, fun-policing bananaheads (although we totally are). And not because grammar posts give us a lame excuse to post stock photos of male models (well, kind of because of that).
We care about grammar because when people break the rules, confusion results. Just as good manners are about making other people feel comfortable, good grammar is about making readers feel oriented.
And it's annoying to feel disoriented just when you're trying to crush your friend, as this Sparkler
In terms of thrills and chills, restrictive commas are right up there with toe lint. To make this post more fun, let's pretend the Clark in question is 6'2", muscly, and brooding.
I have a quick grammar question.
Which one is correct?
My brother Clark went to the store to buy some oranges.
My brother, Clark, went to the store to buy some oranges.
I am just not sure if you are suppose to separate "Clark" from the sentence by commas or if "brother" is just describing "Clark."
I suppose I am mostly confused because you can take "Clark" out and it still makes sense.
Here's the short answer: both sentences are grammatically
I've gotten lots of emails recently from Sparklers bemoaning their own run-on sentences. When I read the supposedly offensive sentences, however, they turn out to be plain old long. Sparklers, really long sentences aren't necessarily run-ons. Henry James writes sentences that go on for pages, literally, yet the man never wrote a run-on in his
I have a major essay to do regarding satire in Hamlet and A Midsummer Night's Dream. Do you think you could explain satire? I'm not sure how to tackle this (and I have been working on it for sometime!) and would appreciate some guidance. Does satire have to do with characters? plot? something else entirely? HELP!
Today, I got a question about possessives. Hooray! I love grammar questions! And not only that, but I now have the opportunity to quote at length from my very own book. ("I'm so vain, I probably think this possessives question is about me, I'm so vaaaaaainnn.....") Here now is the relevant excerpt from Ultimate Style: