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Cities that have hard winters have no "alternative" and must repair roads in the summer. And when they do, they need to provide motorists with "alternate" routes.

That sentence illustrates the difference between "alternative" and "alternate."  Continue reading...
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Let's say you've just arrived from another planet, with a mastery of English, but little exposure to the popular sport known as golf. So you don't understand why one golfer would hit a "banana ball" and end up with a "bogey," while another used a "chicken stick" and ended up with an "eagle."  Continue reading...
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We love to "range." When describing a new shopping mall, for example, an article might say: "It has everything from a roller coaster for the kiddies to high-end boutiques for fashionistas." The "from" and "to" implies a "range," and a range implies that "everything" will be along that line. But the only thing the roller coaster and boutique have in common is that they are inside this new mall. It’s a "false range."  Continue reading...
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Max Crittenden writes: "I'm seeing some peculiar usage (misuse, to my mind) of the phrase 'out of pocket.' 'My housekeeper has injured her leg and will be out of pocket for a while.' 'Sorry, I've been out of pocket and haven't gotten to your request." Is anyone else noticing this? To me, 'out of pocket' means only 'short of money.'"  Continue reading...

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"Jamie Dimon: JPMorgan Will Likely Claw Back Pay From Responsible Executives," the headline said. Dimon, JPMorgan's chief executive, was telling the Senate Banking Committee that the firm would probably seek to reclaim some pay and bonuses from those involved in the firm's $2 billion trading loss.  Continue reading...
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The journalism professor was not having much "fun" explaining things to her feature-writing students: "I know so fun is wrong but I can't tell them why," she wrote. "So happy is right, but so fun should have 'much' as the sandwich filling."  Continue reading...
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An extension of a federal highway program passed the House recently, over the objections of some Democrats. "Even as they were approving the measure in an anti-climatic voice vote, Democrats sharply criticized Republicans for not accepting a two-year, $109 billion version of the transportation measure the Senate had approved on a bipartisan vote earlier this month," one news report said.  Continue reading...
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4 5 6 7 8 Displaying 36-42 of 58 Articles