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POSTED
2020-04-21
07-081940
08-47148
09-081966
10-31

I'm rather particular about grammar and language, sometimes in pretty unconventional ways.

This page is a stub, created on 2020-04-21 (last updated on 2022-04-25). Its contents are notes on the issues and angles I want to address about this topic.


Here are a few of my fixations and particularities (in no particular order) that I intend to explain in greater detail:

  • apostrophes
    • "The Bureau of Grammatical Integrity" and the anecdote with Sara Triplett and her parents when we "vandalized" the "WASHER AND DRYER HOOK UPS'" sign
    • for pluralization of acronyms
    • for possessives of words that end in "s" or "z"
  • the subjunctive
  • serial comma
  • punctuation and quotation marks
  • punctuation for abbreviations (eg, "eg", "ie", "etc", "Mr", "Dr", "PhD", "Sr")
  • nested parentheses
  • verbs as nouns (eg, "That's a big ask.")
  • nouns as verbs (eg, "Let's solution that.")
  • adjectives as nouns (eg, "deliverable")
  • noun versus verb compound forms; eg,
    • "setup" versus "set up"
    • "login" versus "log in"
    • "checkin" versus "check-in"
    • "oncall" versus "on-call"
    • "inline" versus "in-line"
  • "the reason why", "the reason is because"
  • "coincidence" versus "mere coincidence"
  • hyphenates that should be their own words
    • "usecase"
    • "enduser"
    • "painpoint"
  • contranyms (eg, "cleave", "sanction", "practically")
  • negation prefixes that don't negate
    • inflammable
    • delimit
    • deploy/employ
  • "begs the question" versus "implies the question"
  • "try and" → "try to"
  • the "[blah] because [noun phrase]" construction
  • "a-whole-nother"
  • RAS syndrome
    • "PIN number"
    • "ATM machine"
    • "API interface"
    • "VIN number"
    • "DC Comics"
    • "LCD display"
    • "UPC code"
    • "IP protocol"
  • "compose" versus "comprise"
  • "further" versus "farther"
  • "less" versus "fewer"
  • "envy" versus "jealousy"
  • "effective" versus "efficient"
  • "assume" and "assumption" versus "conclude" and "conclusion"
  • "need" versus "want"
    • the effect of regarding these as being quantitatively on the same spectrum: "strong-enough desire" == "metaphysical requirement", an uncalibrated sense of entitlement
    • relationship to scarcity and "post-scarcity world"
    • consider Aristotle's view on the distinction
  • "facts" versus "opinions"
  • "objective" versus "subjective"
    • "universal" versus "personal"
    • "situational" versus "context-free"
    • "abstract" versus "concrete"
    • "opinion-based" versus "fact-based"
    • "controversial" versus "uncontroversial"
  • "selfish" versus "short-sighted whim pursuit"
  • "practical" versus "pragmatic"
  • "reconcile" versus "rationalize"
  • "judge" versus "condemn"
  • "feeling" as referring to either emotion or intellectual/cognitive conclusions (ie, "seeming")
    • "I feel X." as being either "My emotion is X." or "It seems to me that X."
  • "compromise"
  • "[collection]" versus "[collection] [item]":
    • "blog post" versus "blog"
    • "podcast" versus "podcast episode"
    • "wiki" versus "wiki page"
    • "JIRA" versus "JIRA issue"
    • "FAQ" versus "FAQ entry"
    • "meme" versus ???
  • "irregardless", other non-words, and the (d)evolution of language (maybe a separate post in its own right)
  • datetime stamps, 24-hour time
  • "3 times more (than x)" versus "3 times x"
  • "3 times less (than x)" versus "1/3 of x"
  • "verbally" != "orally"; {"orally", "in writing"} ⊂ "verbally"
  • "gods"
  • "theater" versus "theatre"
  • British English alternatives I prefer
    • lift
    • rubbish (bin)
  • pronunciation of plural words, such as
    • "basis" versus "base"
    • "bias" ("bias-ehz" versus "bias-eez")
  • Picard-isms: schedule, issue, appreciate
  • other words I like to pronounce in my own way
    • controversial
    • mature
    • modular
    • incredulity
    • gradually
    • Christian
    • parmesan
    • pendulum
    • prescient
    • individual
    • Ventura
    • cordial
    • emaciated
    • Vellejo
    • neutral
    • I want you
    • Colorado, Nevada, Iraq, Iran, Afganistan
    • leisure
    • celestial
    • niche
    • associated
    • Sebastian
    • altruism
    • species
    • amateur
    • procedure / procedural
    • aficionado
    • nausea
    • equilateral
    • mischievous
    • fraudulent
    • azure
    • quasi
    • grandure
    • spatula
  • generic brand names
    • Kleenex
    • Band-aid
    • Speedo
    • Ziplock
    • Jello
    • Tupperware
  • pronunciations I'm not okay with
    • foyer
    • Louisville
    • Buena Vista
  • "none are" versus "none is"; "any are" versus "any is"
  • singular "they"
  • singular "data"
    • shorthand for "item of data"?
    • connection to "the Borg", "a Borg"
    • contrast/connection to "medium"/"mediums" and "media"
  • "formulas" versus "formulae"
  • "terrariums" versus "terraria", "aquarium" versus "aquaria"
  • phrases and words I've either coined or am enamored of
    • "dermatological phenomena"
    • "micro-disasters"
    • "musical hedonist"
    • "ussie" (like "selfie", but of multiple subjects)
    • "disconcur"
    • "embiggen"
    • "foot coffins"
    • "meow"
      • "right meow"
      • "over meow"
    • "tinylittlebabygoi"
  • "pet owner" / "pet parent" → "pet guardian" / "pet custodian"
  • "crazy" → "absurd", "ludicrous", "ridiculous"
  • "hysterical" → "hilarious" (for funny things); "frantic", "frenetic", "uncalibrated" etc (for uncontrolled extreme emotion)

Fun games:

  • alterninyms (eg, "Sleep, Shower, and Sundry")
  • pluralization (eg, mattropodes, hice, Attorneys General, culs de sac, Lords of the Rings, boxen, dominatrices, Starbucies, Unices)
  • silly pronunciations
    • escape
    • jalapeño
    • quesadilla
    • fajita
    • tortilla
    • Chipotle / Aristotle
    • Target
    • influencer
    • cocaine
    • marijuana
    • Paleo
    • dangerous
    • photography
    • pornography
    • lyrics
    • eggs
    • legs
    • book, hook
    • wifis
    • stupid
    • robot
    • aminal
    • curious → querious
    • fluffy → floofy
    • vitamin
    • cimamin
    • sammiches
    • ormaments
    • hummusexual
    • again
    • puppy-doughgs

Other topics:

  • Style guides be damned! (Kind of.)
  • descriptive versus prescriptive versus objective
  • evolution versus devolution
  • Newspeak
    • liberal
    • progressive
    • social justice
    • (re)distribution (of wealth)
    • privilege
    • labour party
    • proletariat
    • pro-life
    • detention center
    • energy conservation
    • the homeless
    • the environment (this is like referring, in general, to "the context")
    • (tax) subsidy (referring to a tax break as a "subsidy")
    • human rights
    • economic rights
  • words I struggle to pronounce
    • remunerative