24 September, 2007
Stop the Apostrophe!
I am not an English major. I do not know all the rules of grammar. I have no idea what a dangling participle is (though it sounds like something you could be arrested for if you were in public). All that said, I do know how to use an apostrophe. I thought pretty much everyone above grade school level did. Judging by the large number of signs abusing the apostrophe, however, I must assume I was laboring under a misconception. The most common use of the apostrophe is to denote possession, such as "Bill's car". It is also commonly used of course in a conjunction ( is not becomes isn't). Sadly, a growing number of the population seems to be falling in love with the use of the apostrophe, even some who clearly should know better. If you spent years in law school, you should know that you and your partner are not "Attorney's at Law". I'm pretty sure you are not possessors of the law. Or how about the car repair shop near my home with the sign "Mark's Toy's"? I have seen so many examples of the misuse of the apostrophe that it is driving me crazy. It is just indicative of the poor state of education in most of this country. Or maybe people just don't care if they look ignorant.