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Word of the Month

Venal: Capable of being bought or bribed.

The venal politicians cater to whatever their patrons pay them to do.
She considered a fashion career but soon decided that the industry was too venal.
     —New York Times Jun 14, 2017


Tip of the Month

The Diligent Apostrophe

Originated in the 16th century and comes from the Greek apostrophḗ, meaning “the act of turning away” or signaling that something is missing or has been omitted.

One of the most used punctuations in writing, the apostrophe has been misused and abused (e.g., the salon is hiring specialist’s in cutting hair; sale’s numbers dropped this year, Annies’ diary; childrens’ playground; thank’s for waiting; your welcome to try samples; the company celebrates it’s two years in business.) it is useful in the following ways:

It signals a possessive: The girl’s car; the teacher’s desk; the women’s club; Francis’s efforts to ride a bike; a friend of Mary’s.

It indicates time and quantity: I will give two weeks’ notice before leaving; He wasted ten yards’ worth of fabric when he destroyed the display; in three days’ time.

It signals the omission of numerals in dates: She loves music from the ‘70s (not ‘70’s); they married in the spring of ’98.

It signals the omission of letters (contractions): The B’more football team; you’re late; it's.

It aids in comprehension of the plural of lowercase letters: Make sure all i’s are dotted and t’s are crossed.

It signals the plural of words: the dos and don’ts of cooking; avoid using too many and’s and but’s in you essay.

Watch your p’s and q’s!

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