Mighty Red Pen

October 30, 2012

Spooktacular apostrophe

Filed under: Apostrophe catastrophe — mighty red pen @ 6:41 pm

Great googly-moogly, this ghoulish little apostrophe sure puts the “trick” in “trick-or-treat.”

This Halloween, don’t be haunted by the grocer’s apostrophe. When forming a plural, no apostrophe is needed.

September 17, 2012

Its, er, It’s a typo!

Filed under: Apostrophe catastrophe — mighty red pen @ 6:41 pm

H/t to the Mighty Quinn (no relation to MRP), who spotted this little tidbit in Vermont:

Ah, these sign makers have taken the good old it’s/its confusion (which is, as we know, near and dear to MRP’s heart) to a whole ‘nother level.

Okay, here’s the deal. As a contraction of the words it is, the apostrophe is placed thusly: it’s. When it’s possession you seek to show, that’s its, as in Barbecue At Its Best!

If you find yourself putting the apostrophe after the whole shebang, as in its’, then you need to reevaluate and start all over again. Brians’ Common Errors in English Usage can help, as can The Oatmeal.

August 12, 2012

Heavenly typo

Filed under: Apostrophe catastrophe — mighty red pen @ 1:35 pm
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It may be true that God loves you.

However, this extra apostrophe in loves may need a divine intervention.



May 12, 2012

Because we’re worth it.

Filed under: Apostrophe catastrophe,Overseen — mighty red pen @ 6:07 pm
Tags: , ,

What does this mom want for Mother’s Day? A pair of apostrophes for this sign (isn’t, Mother’s Day), that’s what.


February 8, 2012

The kids’s are all right

Filed under: Apostrophe catastrophe — mighty red pen @ 5:41 pm

What do you do when you’re making a word possessive and you can’t decide if the apostrophe goes before or after the “s”? Well, one strategy—which I do not recommend—is to put it both before and after.

The silver lining to this moment? Hearing S. (age 8) say, “That’s not written right, is it, Mom?” No, no it isn’t.

February 5, 2012

The secret lives of English teachers

Filed under: Apostrophe catastrophe,Overseen — mighty red pen @ 5:25 pm
Tags: ,

Mister MRP is an English teacher, so I’ve been to a couple of English faculty parties over the years. Let me tell you, as fun as they are, they don’t even approach the level of rowdiness shown here.

H/t to Dave Blazek.

June 14, 2011

Getting it all ironed out

Filed under: Apostrophe catastrophe,Overseen,Perilous punctuation — mighty red pen @ 6:23 pm

Here’s another of this week’s apostrophe catastrophes. This little tidbit was spotted at the local Christmas Tree Shops (as an aside, is one of these really called “a Christmas Tree Shops”?).

You know one thing some moms are great at? Ironing out life’s extra apostrophes, that’s what.

June 13, 2011

Pant’s on the ground

Filed under: Apostrophe catastrophe,Perilous punctuation — mighty red pen @ 7:00 pm
Tags: ,

This sign outside a business establishment in Metrowest Boston was just the first of the trio of apostrophe catastrophes I spotted this week.

You know what could be shortened? This word. If only they would remove the extra apostrophe in pant’s.

January 28, 2011

Single white t-shirt seeks your love

Filed under: Spellbound — mighty red pen @ 3:03 pm
Tags: , ,

Speaking of misspelled t-shirts, check out this little tidbit spotted at the Hairpin.

I’m sure this t-shirt’s milkshake brings all the boys to the yard, but I would be willing to bet cash money that not one of them is a word nerd (unless it’s a word nerd with a strong sense of irony).

H/t to the cinetrix.

November 23, 2010

One apostrophe on the rocks, please

Filed under: Apostrophe catastrophe — mighty red pen @ 7:28 pm

This apostrophe abuse spotted on boston.com:

I don’t know about Bloody Marys before noon, but I’m going to need one before long to get over this crime against punctuation.

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