What Do YouWant?
Good Grammar, or Good Taste?
Remember the “Winston Tastes Good Like A Cigarette Should”commercial? An English teacher responded that the commercial should say “…As A Cigarette Should.” Winston responded with “What Do YouWant? Good Grammar, or Good Taste?”
Commonly Misused Words and Phrases
And . . .
Synonyms,Homonyms, Antonyms, and Number Expansions
Words that sound alike (homonyms):
Accept is a verb meaning “to receive.” Except is usually a preposition meaning “excluding.” I will accept all the packages except that one. Except is also a verb meaning “to exclude.” Please except that item from the list.
Affect is usually a verb meaning “to influence.” Effect isusually a noun meaning “result.” The drug did not affect the disease, and it had several adverse side effects. Effect can also be averb meaning “to bring about.” Only the president can effect such adramatic change.
An Allusion is an indirect reference. An illusion is a misconception or false impression. Did you catch my allusion to Shakespeare? Mirrors give the room an illusion of depth.
An altar is a table or stand upon which religious ceremonies are performed.
Alter means "to change": Sally, have you altered your hair color?
A desert is a dry, sandy place. You place the accent on the first syllable (say"DEH-zert"). It is also an old-style word for "something that is deserved." Nowadays the second meaning only surfaces in the phrase "just deserts." That's just as in "fair," not just as in "only." Whew, this gets more and more confusing, eh?
Note: When“desert” is used as a verb, it means “to leave empty or alone” or “to abandon.”
Dessert is the sweet stuff you generally eat after a meal. You accent the second syllable (say"deh-ZERT").
Capital refers to a city, capitol to a building where lawmakers meet. Capital also refers to wealth or resources. The capitol has undergone extensive renovations. The residents of the state capital protested the development plans.
Climactic is derived from climax, the point of greatest intensity in a series or progression of events. Climatic is derived from climate; it refers to meteorological conditions. The climactic period in the dinosaurs’ reign was reached just before severe climatic conditions brought on the ice age.
Elicit is a verb meaning “to bring out” or “to evoke.” Illicit is an adjective meaning “unlawful.” The reporter was unable to elicit information from the police about illicit drug traffic.
Emigrate from, Immigrate to:
Emigrate means “to leave one country or region to
settle in another.” In 1900, my grandfather emigrated from Russia.
Immigrate means “to enter another country and reside there.” Many
Mexicans immigrate to the
Hints: Emigrate begins with the letter “E”, as does Exit. When you emigrate, you exit a country. Immigrate begins with the letter “I”, as does In. When you immigrate, you go into a country
Both these words mean "more far. "Farther refers to physical distance: that is, more far in terms that can be measured in inches (or centimeters if you prefer metric). Further refers to more abstract differences: for example, the difference between two people's points of view.
Tom's explanation of what happened is further from the truth than Bill's.
Sally smiled happily.
Sally's smile was happy.
Conan fights well.
Conan's fighting is good.
In the majority of cases, the adverb/adjective pair is easy to understand because, as with happy/happily, they are similar. Well/good confuses us because the two words are so different.
Lose/Loose – Some people just can’t grasp the idea that these two words are totally different – LOSE means “to be unsuccessful in retaining possession of” or “to be deprived of,” whereas LOOSE means “not fastened, restrained, or contained”
Principal is a noun meaning “the head of a school or an organization” or “a sum of money.” Principle is a noun meaning “a basic truth or law.” The principal taught us many important life principles.
To recognize the spelling of Principal first think of yourself as a greedy opportunist. You definitely would want to be a “pal” of anyone who is in a position of power or anything to do with money. This principal has “pal” in it.
Than is a conjunction used in comparisons; then is an adverb denoting time. That pizza is more than I can eat. Tom laughed, and then we recognized him.
Hints: Than is used to compare; both words have the letter “a” in them.
Then tells when; both are spelled the same, except for the first letter.
There, Their, They’re:
There is an adverb specifying place; it is also an expletive. Adverb: Sylvia is lying there unconscious. Expletive: There are two plums left. Their is a possessive pronoun. They’re is a contraction of they are. Fred and Jane finally washed their car. They’re laterthan usual today.
Hints: If you are using there to tell the reader where, both words have h-e-r-e. Here is also a place. If you are using their as a possessive pronoun, you are telling the reader what "they” own. Their has h-e-i-r, which also means heir, as in someone who inherits something. Both words have to do with ownership.
They’re is a contraction of they are. Sound out “they are” in the sentence and see if it works. If it does not, it must be one of the previous versions.
To, Too, Two:
To is a preposition; too is an adverb; two is a number. Too many of your shots slice to the left, but the last two were right on the mark.
Hints: If you are trying to spell out the number, it is always t-w-o. Two has a “w” which is the first letter in “word.” The opposite of word is number.
Too is usually used as also when adding or including some additional information. Whenever you want to include something else, think of it as adding; therefore you also need to add an extra “o.”
These words are relative pronouns. Use "who" when it is the subject of the sentence, "whom" when it is the object. Here's a very simple rule that should always work: Try replacing the word "who/whom" with "he/him." If "he" is correct, "who" is correct. If "him" is correct, "whom" is correct.
He is my brother.
Who is your brother?
I'm looking at him.
You're looking at whom?
Your is a possessive pronoun; you’re is a contraction of you are. You’re going to catch a cold if you don’t wear your coat.
Hints: Sound out you are in the sentence. If it works in the sentence it can be written as you’re. If it sounds awkward, it is probably supposed to be Your.
EXAMPLE: You’re shoes are muddy. "You are shoes are muddy" does not work, so it should be written as: Your shoes are muddy.
Words that don’t sound alike but confuse us anyway:
Lie is an intransitive verb meaning “to recline or rest on a surface.” Its principal parts are lie, lay, lain. Lay is a transitive verb meaning “to put or place.” Its principal parts are lay, laid. Lie, of course, when used as a noun, means an untruth or falsehood. Lie when used as a verb, means to tell a falsehood. Such as: “That is a lie!” “Who told you to lie?”
Hint: Chickens lay eggs. I lie down when I am tired.
Set is a transitive verb meaning “to put” or “to place.” Its principal parts are set, set, set. Sit is an intransitive verb meaning “to be seated.” Its principal parts are sit, sat, sat. She set the dough in a warm corner of the kitchen. The cat sat in the warmest part of the room.
Who, Which, That:
Do not use which to refer to persons. Use who instead. That, though generally used to refer to things, may be used to refer to a group or class of people. I just saw a boy who was wearing a yellow banana costume. I have to go to math next, which is my hardest class. Where is the book that I was reading?
Supposed to: Do not omit the “d.” Suppose to is incorrect.
Used to: Same as above. Do not write use to.
Toward: There is no “s” at the end of the word.
Anyway: Also has no ending “s.” Anyways is nonstandard.
Couldn’t care less: Be sure to make it negative. (Not I could care less.)
All walks of life: Not woks of life. This phrase does not apply to oriental cooking.
Chest of drawers: Not
For all intents and purposes: Not intensive purposes.
Contractions or Definitions? Which sounds better: “I’ve got ten dollars” or “I have ten dollars?” While “I’ve got” is technically correct, the definition of the contraction is “I have,” which would sound awkward if you said “I have got ten dollars.” It is more concise to say “I have ten dollars,” which means the same, but is more correct.
Etc. is short for the Latin et cetera which means literally "and so forth." Therefore, when you say "and etc." you're really saying "and and so forth." This is clearly redundant. Just say "etc" (or preferably "et cetera"). (It may help you to remember that "etc" was once abbreviated &c.)
The letters ATM stand for "Automated Teller Machine." Therefore, when you say "ATM Machine" you're really saying "Automated Teller Machine Machine." This is obviously redundant. Just say "I'm going to the ATM."
I vs. Me
Jane and me are going to town. – INCORRECT
This car belongs to Jane and
"I" is a pronoun that must be the subject, never the object, of a verb. "Me" is a pronoun that must be the object, never the subject. (The same is true for he/him, she/her, we/us, etc.)
As a simple test, try removing Jane from the sentence. You wouldn't say "Me is going to town." You'd say "I am going to town," so say "Jane and I are going to town." You wouldn't say "This car belongs to I," you'd say "This car belongs to me," so say "This car belongs to Jane and me."
Ending a Sentence with a Preposition
Contrary to popular belief, there is no agreement on this one among English professionals. In general, especially if your audience is strict about rules, don't end a sentence with a preposition. Prepositions are little words that indicate position and such: with, at, by, from, etc. In general a preposition should come before ("pre"-position) the noun it modifies. So you should change
“That's the man I must talk to.”
“That's the man to whom I must talk.” To make it simpler, just say “I must talk to that man.”
A participle is a verb-form that ends in -ing. It is called "dangling" when it doesn't agree with its subject.
While walking down the street, a car caught Bob's attention.
The subject of the sentence is "a car," but it is not the car that is doing the walking, therefore the participle "walking" is dangling.
To correct the sentence, write:
While walking down the street, Bob noticed a car.
A car caught Bob's attention as he walked down the street.
Remember that not all words that end in -ing are participles (e.g. thing) and some participles are gerunds depending on context. (A gerund is a participle that is functioning as a noun, e.g. "My favorite activity is sleeping.")
Use of its and it's: Its is a possessive adjective. It means 'belonging to it': Put the parrot back in its cage. It'sis a shortened form of 'it is': It's raining again.
Acronym-- a word (as NATO (North Atlantic Treaty Organization), Radar (Radio Detection and Ranging), Laser (Light Amplification by Stimulated Emission of Radiation), Cop (Constable on Patrol), Police (Protective Organization for Life and Investment in Civil Establishment), or snafu (Situation Normal All Fu**ed Up) formed from the initial letter or letters of each of the successive parts or major parts of a compound term – Acronym Converter
Antonym-- a word of opposite meaning – eg: the usual antonym of good is bad
Homonym-- one of two or more words spelled and pronounced alike but different in meaning (as the noun quail and the verb quail)
Homograph-- one of two or more words spelled alike but different in meaning or derivation or pronunciation (as the bow of a ship, a bow and arrow)
Homophone-- one of two or more words pronounced alike but different in meaning or derivation or spelling (as the words to, too, and two)
Synonym-- one of two or more words or expressions of the same language that have the same or nearly the same meaning in some or all senses
Hyponyms-- a word that represents different categories covered by a superordinate
Superordinate-- a generalterm that includes various different words representing narrower categories
Meronyms-- a wordthat names a part of a given word – eg: ‘brim’ and ‘crown’ are meronyms of hat
Holonyms-- a wordthat names the whole of which a given word is a part – eg: hat is a holonym for ‘brim’ and ‘crown’
Hypernyms-- a wordthat is more generic than a given word
. . .and a little fun . ..
Mamanym – southern usage meaning “mama and them” – eg: “I went to seemamanym yesterday.”
M&M – melts in your mouth, not in your hands
e.g.or i.e. ? -- The abbreviatione.g. (from the Latin exempli gratia, 'for sake of an example') indicates thatone or more examples follow of what has been mentioned in general terms: It couldbe cheaper by public transport, e.g. by train or coach. The abbreviation i.e.(from Latin id est, 'that is') indicates that an explanation follows of whathas just been mentioned: Gratuities are discretionary, i.e. you don't have toleave a tip if you don't want to.
When in doubt, buy a Dictionary or Thesaurus or go back to the 5th Grade
Or click below
(b): on charge (
Nibble: four bits or ½ byte
Byte (B): eight bits (a character/numberrepresented by a byte)
one-tenth of a second: 1/
one-hundredth of a second: 1/
one-thousandth of a second(ms):
one-millionth of a second(us):
one-billionth of a second (ns):
one-trillionth of a second(ps):
Hertz: cycles per second (Hz)
thousands of cycles per second(KHz) =
millions of cycles per second(MHz) =
billions of cycles per second(GHz) =
SI (Système Internationald’ Unitès) Values:
yocto (y) = 10-
zepto (z) = 10-
atto (a) = 10-
femto (f) = 10-
pico (p) = 10-
nano (n) = 10-
(µ) = 10-
milli (m) = 10-
centi (c) = 10-
deci (d) = 10-
102 = 100 (hecto)-- h
106 = 1,000,000 (mega) – M(million)
109 = 1,000,000,000 (giga) – G (billion)
1012 = 1,000,000,000,000 (tera) – T (trillion)
1015 = 1,000,000,000,000,000(peta) – P (quadrillion)
1018 = 1,000,000,000,000,000,000(exa) – E (quintillion)
1021 = 1,000,000,000,000,000,000,000(zeta) – Z (sextillion)
1024 = 1,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000(yotta) – Y (septillion)
1027 = 1,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000(octillion)
1030 = 1,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000(nonillion)
1033 = 1,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000(decillion)
1036 = 1,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000(undecillion)
1039 = 1,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000(duodecillion)
1042 = 1,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000(tredecillion)
1045 = 1,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000(quattuordecillion)
1048 = 1,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000(quindecillion)
1051 = 1,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000(sexdecillion)
1054 = 1,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000(septendecillion)
1057 = 1,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000(octodecillion)
1060 = 1,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000(novemdecillion)
1063 = 1,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000(vigintillion)
1066 = unvigintillion
1069 = duovigintillion
1072 = trevigintillion
1075 = quattuorvigintillion
1078 = quinvigintillion
1081 = sexvigintillion
1084 = septenvigintillion
1087 = octovigintillion
1090 = novemvigintillion
1093 = trigintillion
1096 = untrigintillion
1099 = duotrigintillion
10100 = googol
10102 = tretrigintillion
10105 = quattuortrigintillion
10108 = quintrigintillion
10111 = sextrigintillion
10114 = septentrigintillion
10117 = octotrigintillion
10120 = novemtrigintillion
10123 = quadragintillion
10126 = unquadragintillion
10129 = duoquadrigintillion
10132 = trequadragintillion
10135 = quattuorquadragintillion
10138 = quinquadragintillion
10141 = sexquadragintillion
10144 = septenquadragintillion
10147 = octoquadragintillion
10150 = novemquadragintillion
10153 = quinquagintillion
10156 = unquinquagintillion
10159 = duoquinquagintillion
10162 = trequinquagintillion
10165 = quattuorquinquagintillion
10168 = quinquinquagintillion
10171 = sexquinquagintillion
10174 = septenquinquagintillion
10177 = octoquinquagintillion
10180 = novemquinquagintillion
10183 = sexagintillion
10186 = unsexagintillion
10189 = duosexagintillion
10192 = tresexagintillion
10195 = quattuorsexagintillion
10198 = quinsexagintillion
10201 = sexsexagintillion
10204 = septensexagintillion
10207 = octosexagintillion
10210 = novemsexagintillion
10213 = septuagintillion
10216 = unseptuagintillion
10219 = duoseptuagintillion
10222 = treseptuagintillion
10225 = quattuorseptuagintillion
10228 = quinseptuagintillion
10231 = sexseptuagintillion
10234 = septenseptuagintillion
10237 = octoseptuagintillion
10240 = novemseptuagintillion
10243 = octogintillion
10246 = unoctogintillion
10249 = duooctogintillion
10252 = treoctogintillion
10255 = quattuoroctogintillion
10258 = quinoctogintillion
10261 = sexoctogintillion
10264 = septoctogintillion
10267 = octooctogintillion
10270 = novemoctogintillion
10273 = nonagintillion
10276 = unnonagintillion
10279 = duononagintillion
10282 = treonagintillion
10285 = quattuornonagintillion
10288 = quinnonagintillion
10291 = sexnonagintillion
10294 = septennonagintillion
10297 = octononagintillion
10300 = novemnonagintillion
10303 = 1,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,
googol = 1 followed by 100 zeroes or: 10,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,
googolplex = 1010,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000
googolplex can also bewritten as a
A number, represented bysaid letter, expressing the ratio of the circumference of a perfect circle toits diameter.
member Makoto Kudo said.
[Ed. Note: Isn’t the question “Why?” rather than “How?”]
Pi is used to measure yourhat or cap size.
1. Measure the circumference of your
headusually about ¾ " to
2. Measure snugly to
3. Divide by pi ( 3.1415 ) to find your hat size.
example: If the circumference of your head is
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ONE DOLLAR BILL
Take out a one dollar bill. The one dollar bill
you're looking at first came off the presses in
If you look on the front of the bill, you will see the United States Treasury Seal. On the top you will see the scales for a balanced budget. In the center you have a carpenter's square, a tool used for an even cut. Underneath is the Key to the United States Treasury. That's all pretty easy to figure out, but what is on the back of that dollar bill is something we should all know.
If you turn the bill over, you will see two
circles. Both circles, together, comprise the Great Seal of the
If you look at the left-hand circle, you will see a
Pyramid. Notice the face is lighted, and the western side is dark. This country was just
beginning. We had not begun to explore the West or decided what we
could do for Western Civilization. The Pyramid is un-capped, again signifying
that we were not even close to being finished. Inside the capstone you have the
all-seeing eye, an ancient symbol for divinity. It was
GOD WE TRUST is on this currency. The Latin above the pyramid, ANNUIT COEPTIS, means, "God has favored
ourundertaking." The Latin below
thepyramid, NOVUS ORDO SECLORUM,
means,"a new order has begun." At the base of the pyramid is the
The Bald Eagle was selected as a symbol for victoryfor two reasons: First, he is not afraid of a storm; he is strong, and he issmart enough to soar above it. Secondly, he wears no material crown. We had just broken from the King of England. Also, notice the shield is unsupported. This country can now stand on its own. At the top of that shield you have a white bar signifying Congress, a unifying factor. We were coming together as one nation. In the Eagle's beak you will read, EPLURIBUS UNUM, meaning, "one nation from many people".
Above the Eagle, you have thirteen stars,representing the thirteen original colonies, and any clouds of misunderstanding rolling away. Again, we were coming together as one.
Notice what the Eagle holds in his talons. He holds an olive branch and arrows. This country wants peace, but we will never be afraid to fight to preserve peace. The Eagle always wants to face the olive branch, but in time of war, his gaze turns toward the arrows.
They say that the number
Who can say that a dollar doesn’t buy much?
BILL GATES’ SPEECH TO MT.
Gates recently dished out at a high school speech about
From: Miriam-Webster’sCollegiate Dictionary
Main Entry: hard·ly
1: with force : vigorously
2: in a severe manner :harshly
3: with difficulty : painfully
a. used to emphasize a minimal amount <I hardly knewher> <almost new — hardly a scratch on it>
b: used to soften a negative <you can't hardly tell who anyone is> — G. B. Shaw>
certainly not <that news is hardly surprising>-- usage: hardly in sense
“Where do you stay?”
Don’t you mean, “where do you live?” I stay at work until I go to the housewhere I live.
“I don’t know nothing!”
Double negative (“don’t”and “nothing”). Double negatives cancel each other out. Why not say, “I don’t know anything.”
Look at it this way:
do not know nothing.” Now cancel them out: “I do
If you took a Viagra and it got caught in your throat, would you have a stiff neck all day?
If you stuck a Viagra in your ear, would it make you hard of hearing?
Why do we always hear a reporter say that the National Safety and Transportation Board is conducting an investigation to determine why a plane crashed? The answer is simple: GRAVITY.
“I’m correct, am I not?”
Breakdown: “I am correct.” “Am I not correct?” Make up your mind, then let me know.
do we hear that an autopsy is beingperformed on a
“Can you tell me…?”
Have you ever had someone walk up to you and say “Can you tell me how far it is to the Zoo?” You can just answer “yes” or “no” and walkaway. They should say, “How far is the Zoo?”
The unit “Zero” and the word “Nothing” are similar, but not always the same.
they were the same, you could have 5 apples and multiply them bynothing and
a: the arithmetical symbol 0 or θ‚ denoting the absence of all magnitude or quantity
b: additive identity; specifically the number between the set of all negative numbers and the set of all positive numbers
Zero (temperature): a theoretical temperature characterized by complete absence
of heat and equivalent to exactly
1. a : something that does not exist
b : the absence of all magnitude or quantity; also: zero
c : nothingness
2. someone or something of no or slight value or size
Absolute Nothing: Click Here
(a.k.a. Celsius) = 5/
= Kelvin –
= Centigrade +
= Fahrenheit +
one example of temperature comparisons:
To Convert: To: Multiply By: