Skip to main content

Improve Your Grammar, Impress Your Friends





English grammar can be tricky, and, a lot of times, the words that sound right are actually wrong.
While I certainly am not a master of the English Language, I find myself cringing often at the way certain words are misused, specifically in emails and written documents. To me, it is a distraction that causes the person to whom I am conversing to appear in a negative light.
Often, it's the words that we think we’re using correctly that can cause the biggest stumbles . Today I've picked out three pairs of words that cause many people trouble in their usage to look at with you.
So, before you send your next email, or attach your resume to a document, please take a moment to consider these common issues many of us have with wording, and make some changes as needed:
Thank you to Google for giving critical feedback on the correct usage in some cases, as I wanted to be clear on them myself!
Accept vs. Except
These two words sound similar but have very different meanings. Accept, by definition, means to receive something willingly: “His teacher accepted his explanation for being tardy
Except signifies exclusion: “I can attend every home game in my ticket package except the one next Tuesday.”
I found this tip helpful for remembering which to use: both except and exclusion begin with ex.


Ironic vs. Coincidental

I hear people misuse "ironic" all the time. If your dog trips you and you break your arm the day before going mountain climbing, that’s not ironic—it’s coincidental (bad Fido!).
Ironic has several meanings, but they all involve a type of reversal of what was expected. Verbal irony is when a person says one thing but clearly means another. Situational irony is when a result is the opposite of what was expected.
In “The Gift of the Magi,” by O. Henry, Jim sells his watch to buy combs for his wife’s hair, and she sells her hair to buy a chain for Jim’s watch. Each character sold something precious to buy a gift for the other, but those gifts were intended for what the other person sold. That is irony.


Nauseous vs. Nauseated
Nauseous has been misused so often that the incorrect usage is accepted in many cases. Still, there is a difference. 
Nauseous
 means causing nausea; nauseated means experiencing nausea. 
So, if
 you say "I feel nauseous" what you're actually telling everyone is that you make them sick!
Now what you know the differences in these words, use them correctly when you are speaking, and especially when you are writing. It will show that you have a much firmer grip on the English language than many people around you...

Which should not make you nauseated at all!


DK

Popular posts from this blog

Actually, thats not in the Bible

I don't often have much use for CNN as a news source, but this story by John Blake is so dead on in its point on Bible illiteracy, that I can't not share it! Its a bit long, but worth every moment it takes to read and consider! DK
By John Blake, CNN

(CNN) – NFL legend Mike Ditka was giving a news conference one day after being fired as the coach of the Chicago Bears when he decided to quote the Bible.
“Scripture tells you that all things shall pass,” a choked-up Ditka said after leading his team to only five wins during the previous season.  “This, too, shall pass.”
Ditka fumbled his biblical citation, though. The phrase “This, too, shall pass” doesn’t appear in the Bible. Ditka was quoting a phantom scripture that sounds like it belongs in the Bible, but look closer and it’s not there.

Ditka’s biblical blunder is as common as preachers delivering long-winded public prayers. The Bible may be the most revered book in America, but it’s also one of the most misquoted. Politicians…

Don't Be A Dead Sea

Here's a post from the archives. This was from an early morning prayer time back when I was a Children's Pastor in Kansas. It was a powerful concept then, and I believe just a applicable now!

Enjoy (again!),
-DK


This morning I managed to drag myself out of bed early and make it in to church for our Thursday morning men's Bible Study. Noting the next youngest person in the room was a good 10 years older, I'm going to consider that an accomplishment for today. However, that's not what's significant about the time I shared from 6:30 a.m. to 7:30 a.m. this morning.

Our Pastor was talking our of the gospels, using the stories of Jesus feeding the 5,000 and then the 4,000. Then, shortly after he is done with the second miracle, Christ and the disciples get into their boat, which as an aside may very well have been from Peter's former fishing fleet. As they're traveling, Jesus says in Matthew 16:6:

Be careful," Jesus said to them. "Be on your guard a…

Invest in others

I believe that as a pastor one of the most important things I do is to invest into others. Even in the context of promoting Christ, if I make someone feel important and valued, then they are going to see Christ in a much different light than if I make them feel unimportant or devalue them.

I'm certainly not a master at this, but it is something I strive for. Be it the checkout line at Wal-Mart talking to the cashier, thanking the hostess as I leave after a meal, or speaking to a kid who doesn't seem to be connecting with others, I look for opportunities to 'touch' others with a word of encouragement. While I don't do it to gain anything for myself, the results are often amazing.

Just yesterday I went through a drive through and got a drink. When the lady at the window opened the window to take my money, I smiled at her and said "Hi. how are you doing today?" Simple right? She looked at me for a brief moment then said "Actually, it's a good day. …