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Grammar and the Peeves that Pet It



  • qbrozenqbrozen Posts: 16,895
    ellipsis is singular, but not in the sense that it is a singular ... uhhh... period, but a singular occurrence.

    Ellipses would be multiple occurrences. So ... in the sentence in my first paragraph, I used 2 ellipses, but in this paragraph, I used 1 ellipsis.

    3 dots indicates the omission of words, while 4 dots indicates the omission of a full sentence or more.

    usually there are no spaces around 3 dots, but spaces around 4. But that's a style preference issues. I like to use spaces most times, personally.

    '13 Stang GT; '86 Benz 300E; '98 Volvo S70; '12 Leaf; '08 Town&Country

  • kyfdx@Edmundskyfdx@Edmunds Posts: 25,881
    Ellipses, ellipsis... Where does ellipse fit in? :surprise:

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  • Kirstie@EdmundsKirstie@Edmunds Posts: 10,676
    Not in a round hole.

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  • qbrozenqbrozen Posts: 16,895
    that's when the moon covers the sun, right?

    '13 Stang GT; '86 Benz 300E; '98 Volvo S70; '12 Leaf; '08 Town&Country

  • imidazol97imidazol97 Crossroads of America: I70 & I75Posts: 17,702
    My head hurts already from reading this discussion.

    This message has been approved.

  • cdnpinheadcdnpinhead Forest Lakes, AZPosts: 3,206
    ". . . . 3 dots indicates the omission of words, while 4 dots indicates the omission of a full sentence or more . . . ."

    Well, I'm in here with the rest of you pinheads, and this post is part of why. I try to execute proper usage, regardless of the venue, and I'd never heard this before. Or, as is becoming more the case recently, I forgot it if I did.

    My peeve to pet relates to people who & things that. I am sick to death of reading (or hearing) about people that do things.
  • xwesxxwesx Fairbanks, AlaskaPosts: 8,268
  • xwesxxwesx Fairbanks, AlaskaPosts: 8,268
    They make me happy. I never feel like I have time to finish, so several at the end is like saying, "you haven't heard the last from me."

    Absolutely! And, if you tend to ramble or trail off, such generous use of punctuation is simply a written version of the spoken equivalent....... ;)

    However, when using ellipses in quotations, stick to the rule outlined above for a proper result.
  • xwesxxwesx Fairbanks, AlaskaPosts: 8,268
    In both spoken and written communication, the following three items are certainly the ones with which I am most annoyed:

    1. The improper use of 'good' and 'can' where 'well' and 'may' should be used.

    2. Ending a sentence with a conjunction. Honestly, what for?

    3. The use of contractions. I'd explain it, but I can't.

    Why do these items annoy me? Simply because they are lazy. They are communicated as lazy and unrefined, and I find them to be far too prolific within our society. For example, several years ago I worked at the Career Services office of my university. While there, I was asked to provide editorial oversight of the annual "Career Services Guide." Keep in mind that this guide is meant as a tool for students as they seek jobs and develop their careers. It was so lazily written that I had absolutely no confidence in the content, even though I knew the content itself was solid advice! My first task was to set about restructuring the sentences within the entire document so it was no longer "lazy." As a small university, this document was, of course, someone's "baby." After butting heads with that person for a few weeks and finally reaching a compromise, we produced a very solid document. In addition to some graphic and layout changes, there was very little modified within the document. However, we immediately received praise for the guide from administrators and students alike; the general reply was, "it feels so professional."

    My weaknesses:

    *Starting nearly every sentence with "However," "Therefore," and similar.
    *Passive sentences. I probably should not be frustrated by this, but I am. I use more "will be" and "has been" than a person is rightly alloted. :sick:
    *When writing at Edmunds, prolific use of parenthetical modifiers within sentences. I think this is a result of my detail-oriented nature and wanting to shove excessive detail into a small space.

    However, I was very proud the first time someone asked my son (18 months old at the time)"how are you doing?" and he replied, "[his name] is doing very well!" Unfortunately, now that he is nearly 3 and has been bombarded with "good" from nearly everyone else for so long, he recently started replying to such inquiries with, "I am doing good." :cry:
  • xwesxxwesx Fairbanks, AlaskaPosts: 8,268
    BUT, what drives me nuts on message boards are the lack of paragraphs

    I notice that, every so often, the paragraphing seems to not work when posting here on Edmunds. It is almost always when I am writing a long post (which is... most... of the time)! I write it 5-6 paragraphs long and it comes out with a short paragraph to start, then 30 lines of run-on paragraph! I panic. I go back to edit the post. I double-check the paragraphing. I delete breaks and place them anew. I preview and all is well. I post.... no paragraphs! I cry (and often apologize in a follow-up post). :D
  • tallman1tallman1 Posts: 1,874
    I love... ellipsis. Some spellcheck program I once used didn't recognize the words following the ellipsis so I started putting the space after it and all was fine.
  • qbrozenqbrozen Posts: 16,895
    i was having a bit of doubt as i typed it, since it is a rule i have not had to use in a very long time. your post made me want to reference it. so i went and searched. it is correct; HOWEVER, it seems that it is technically a period followed immediately by a standard 3-dot ellipsis (the period being necessary since you are ommitting a full sentence or more).

    ain't being anal just grand?

    by the by, for the record, I love me some contractions (not the type that babies cause). I also love incomplete sentences. Sometimes. When easily understood. capitalization isn't always necessary. i sometimes use it, sometimes not. of course, i'm talking informal writing here. my rules for what i produce at my job are COMPLETELY different.

    '13 Stang GT; '86 Benz 300E; '98 Volvo S70; '12 Leaf; '08 Town&Country

  • 210delray210delray Posts: 4,722
    In written form only, everyone seems to substitute "loose" for "lose," as in "use it or loose it," or "I'm loosing my mind."

    I don't understand this at all, but I pretty sure it comes up every day on these and other forums.

    About "however," I'd much rather see it used than today's cliche of choice, "that said" or "having said that..."

    And can someone please take "at the end of the day" outside and strangle it?
  • tidestertidester Posts: 10,110
    And can someone please take "at the end of the day" outside and strangle it?

    I'm with you on that one! It is a rhetorical pomposity that roughly translates to "You are a pitiable fool and only I, with my superior intelligence and ineffable sagacity, am capable of sorting out the Universe but I'll briefly lower myself to correct your errant prattle by revealing the Truth ..."

    And that's the bottom line! ;)
  • kyfdx@Edmundskyfdx@Edmunds Posts: 25,881
    I have trouble with using "that said", when I'm writing.. it just seems wrong. Keep changing it to "that stated", though not sure that is any better.

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  • mac24mac24 Posts: 3,910
    I think that unless it's a document that has some kind of specific legal meaning, "that said" is fine.

    When I read something, I translate the written words into speech (in my head :)) as I read. To me at any rate, you are 'saying' what you write.
  • user777user777 Posts: 3,341
    sometimes i find myself speaking what i'm writing. :surprise:
  • Kirstie@EdmundsKirstie@Edmunds Posts: 10,676
    I don't like ending a sentence with a preposition, though occasionally I find that avoiding doing so makes my writing and speech laughably cumbersome.

    xwesx, do you happen to be in science? That tends to make one gravitate toward the passive voice. No one in scientific writing EVER does anything. DNA was sequenced. The experiments were performed. Results were obtained. I know that it's professionally correct, but it still makes me want to scream "by WHOM???" from time to time.

    delray, even worse than the proliferation of "at the end of the day" (especially in sports), is the largely British use of "in actual fact." ACTUAL fact? As opposed to made-up fact?

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  • tidestertidester Posts: 10,110
    but it still makes me want to scream "by WHOM???"

    Politicians excel at switching between active and passive. On the one hand, "I singlehandedly created this fine piece of world changing legislation!" And, on the other hand, "Mistakes were made!"

    Yeah, right, but by WHOM??? :)

    And, I agree, a preposition is a bad thing to end a sentence with. Oh, the things up to which we must put! ;)
  • cdnpinheadcdnpinhead Forest Lakes, AZPosts: 3,206
    that Lynne Truss is a name known to at least half of the participants here, several of whom appear to be hosts.

    Are any of you old enough to remember John Charles Daily, who hosted a game show back in the late '50's & early '60's? The man could put words together, as could a number of others over the years. Appropriate construction of articulate sentences is of little or no value anymore, but it's nice to see that a few of us are willing to mourn the demise.
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