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Bare / Bear

I cannot bear the misuse of the verb bare.  I find it unbearable that the verb bare, which properly means “to denude” or “to undress,” is substituted for bear, which means “to tolerate” or “to carry.”

He is barely there, barely existing.  He is bare existingness, pure existentiality.

The bear bears a clutch of robins on its back.

The bear has been bearing a clutch of robins on its back.

The bear has borne a clutch of robins on its back.

The bear bore a clutch of robins on its back.

 

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“Happy Birthday to Infants!”

Please never say or write, “Happy Birthday!” (notice the capitalization and the exclamation mark), unless you are wishing happiness to a neonate who is coming into the world on the day on which you utter or inscribe these words.

If someone is seventy-eight years old, why wish that person a “Happy Birthday,” since s/he was born long ago?  After all, she or he was not born today.

“Happy Birthday!” implies the giving of happiness on the day of someone’s nativity.

Instead say / write, “Happy Birth Anniversary!”  I admit that it would be cumbersome / stilted / artificial to say or write, “I wish you happiness on the anniversary of the day of your birth” or “Happy Anniversary of the Day of Your Birth!”

Please note the punctuation and capitalization:

They shouted, “Happy Birth Anniversary!”

They wished her a “happy birth anniversary.”

 

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PRINCIPLES OF ENGLISH USAGE: STANDARD WRITTEN AMERICAN ENGLISH by Joseph Suglia. Table of Contents

PRINCIPLES OF ENGLISH USAGE: STANDARD WRITTEN AMERICAN ENGLISH

by Joseph Suglia

Table of Contents

 

A Few Words of Introduction

124 Problems of Usage

All of these sentences are wrong. Why?

“Subconscious,” “subconsciously”

Stupidity vs. Ignorance

Analogy Blindness

Twenty-Seven More Principles of English Usage

Groups of Animals

A Brief Mention of “Mention”

Access

Adverse vs. Averse

Affect vs. Effect

Aggravate

Alliteration

Alternately vs. Alternatively

Although; also

Amid vs. Among

Analogous vs. Similar

And, But, Or, Because

Anxious vs. Eager

Apostrophe

“As to”

Avoid These Words

Because

Blatant vs. Flagrant

“Blog”

The Brave and the Cowardly

Brutalize

Cactuses, Octopuses, and Ignoramuses on your Syllabuses

Censure vs. Censor

Classic vs. Classical

Claustrophobic

Cliches

Cohort

Compliment vs. Complement

Compose vs. Comprise

Convince

Copious Notes, Stark Contrasts, Heated Debates, Devastating Losses, and Firm Believers

Danglers (Misplaced or Dangling Modifiers)

Decimate

Deism vs. Theism–Or, Why I am Such a Spiritual Person

Deja vu

Delusion vs. Illusion

Devil’s Advocate

Dialogue, Conference, Reference, Table

Diaphanous

Dilemma

Discreet vs. Discrete

Discriminating against People Like Me

Disinterested vs. Uninterested

Dynamic Arch-Nemeses

Each other vs. One another

Economic vs. Economical

Elicit vs. Illicit

Emulate

Enjoying Reading

Enormity vs. Enormousness

Envelop vs. Envelope

“Everybody danced with their spouses”

Everyday vs. Every Day

Fascist

Few vs. Less

Fleshy vs. Fleshly

Fruit, Salt, and Mustard

French Latin vs. Anglo-Saxon German

The Holy Dictionary

Hopefully…

However…

Hyphen

I

Iconic Role Models

“I could care less”

Imply vs. Infer

In behalf of vs. On behalf of

Infamous

Inflammable Flammables

“In terms of…”

Into vs. In to

It isn’t ironic. It really isn’t.

Kids

Like

Leading Question

Literally

“Looking forward to receive…”

Malnutrition, malnourishment

Masterful vs. Masterly

May, Might, Could

Muscular

Mutual Friends Love Platonic Friends

Narrative

Number

Oblivious

Optimistic

Oversimplified Oversimplifications

Parameter vs. Perimeter

Penultimate

Phenomenal Phenomena!

Preposition at the End of the Sentence

Presently

Pretentious

Pristine

“Quick question!”

Quoting

Realize / Realization

Refute

Restauranteur vs. Restaurateur

Ridiculously Ridiculous Ridiculousness

Sensual vs. Sensuous

Sports Metaphors

Than vs. Then

Too Many Words

Tragedy

Transpire

Is it “try to help you” or “try and help you”?

Uniquely Unique Uniqueness

Waiting All Night on You (in High School)

The End

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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A Brief Mention of “Mention”

According to The Washingtonian, Sarah Huckabee Sanders “mentioned” [sic] that the Red Hen restaurant from which she was evicted is situated in Lexington, Virginia:

“Even though Sanders specifically mentioned that the restaurant is in Lexington, Virginia, that hasn’t stopped people from confusing it with a popular restaurant of the same name in DC’s Bloomingdale neighborhood.  The two establishments are completely unaffiliated” (23 June 2018).

This is an incorrect use of mention.  A mention, after all, is an incidental remark, and a Twitter posting is too short to contain a “mention.”  Sanders certainly did not merely “mention” that her eviction took place in Lexington, Virginia; she proclaimed this fact.

Mentions can be clever or self-deceptive ways of writing what you really care about.  This is what rhetoricians call apophasis.  For instance:

“It’s not even worthy of mention that my husband cheated on me.”

Or, phrased differently:

“I won’t even mention that my husband cheated on me.”  Here is an example of a mention that one denies being a mention.

Let me mention that the title of this entry, like many of my entries, is ironic.  Mentions, by definition, are brief.  Therefore, it is pleonastic to write, brief mention.

 

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a lot in English, a lot in formal english, also at the beginning of a sentence, avoid a lot, doctor joseph suglia, dr. joseph suglia, joseph suglia, state as a verb, Uncategorized

Avoid These Words

Avoid these words and phrases:

1.) Avoid a lot in formal prose.

Instead, write, a great deal or many.

2.) Never introduce written quotations with these outworn, stock, ready-made expressions:

She states

He stated

She says

He said

She talks about

He talked about

Instead, use specific verbs and verb phrases such as s/he “writes,” “remarks,” “discusses,” “explains,” “deplores,” “provides examples of,” “asserts,” “affirms,” “believes that,” “contends,” “asseverates,” “supports the idea that,” “suggests,” “corroborates,” “claims,” “urges,” “acknowledges,” “admires,” “agrees,” “emphasizes,” “explains,” “complicates,” “recommends,” etc.

Please only use the present tense when introducing a written quotation, except in the case of analepsis.

3.) Please avoid what I call vacuum words and vacuum phrases.  These are words and phrases that are unnecessary / redundant / superfluous—words and phrases that take up space.  In other words, filler.

Here are some examples of vacuum words / phrases:

to continue (to do something)

to try (to do something)

to begin (to do something)

to start (to do something)

etc., etc., etc.

4.) Avoid introducing yourself with as-clauses:

As an educator, I object to that remark.

THIS SHOULD READ:

Being an educator, I object to that remark.

OR:

Since I am an educator, I object to that remark.

Dr. Joseph Suglia

 

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Dynamic Arch-Nemeses

Dynamic is properly an adjective, not a noun, and should never be used to mean “how two people relate to each other.”  It means “energetic” or “forceful.”  Use relation or relationship instead of dynamic as a noun.

Don’t use “arch-nemesis,” unless you mean “original nemesis.”  Arche is Greek for “origin.”

Thank you.

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Also; although

Please do not begin a sentence with also.  Begin with a conjunctive adverb such as moreover.

Please only use although at the beginning of your sentences.

Please do not place although in the middle of your sentences.  Use despite the fact thatthough, or even though instead.

Joseph Suglia

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