Grammar Snob Quickie Quiz #3

Are you ready to kick off the work week with the third Grammar Snob Quickie Quiz?  For those of you who were a bit thrown off by last week’s question, I promise today’s quiz is a little more grammatically traditional.  

Here are the results of last week’s quiz:


The correct answer is “None of the above.”  For a detailed explanation, please see the string of comments on the post.  If you want the shortened version:  octopuses, octopi, and octopods are all accepted by scientists as terms for more than one octopus.  You will not find a scientist who accepts meese to mean more than one moose or bi to describe more than one bus, but you will find scientists that accept multiple terms for more than one octopus.

Now let’s get back to basics.  Here’s this week’s question:


Grammar Snob Quickie Quiz #2

Happy Monday!  Happy second day of adjusting to the stupid time change!

Can you sense the sarcasm in this morning’s post?  Sorry, it’s hard for me to conceal my disgust for a day that begins with a trip to the dentist.  😦

I was pleased to see that many of you enjoyed my first Grammar Snob Quickie Quiz last week.  For the curious minds out there, here are the overall results:


I’m giving a virtual pat on the back to the 63% who passed the quiz.  The rest of you have a chance at redemption; take this week’s Grammar Snob Quickie Quiz!

Grammar Snob Quickie Quiz

I love to try new things, which is why today marks the start of a weekly feature I have dubbed the “Grammar Snob Quickie Quiz.”  Each Monday, I will post a single multiple-choice question that only a true grammar snob will be able to answer correctly.

“But why?” you might ask.  (Did you?)

Although bashing poor grammar is my specialty, I’m a true believer in the saying “You must be the change you wish to see in the world.”  I can criticize poor grammar until the world ends, but I’d also prefer to do my part to help improve the quality of Average Joe’s grammar.  Otherwise, what am I accomplishing?

So, below is the FIRST EVER Grammar Snob Quickie Quiz question.  Good luck!

So you want to be an English Star?

I have been struggling to compile a list of super awesome online games to help children who are struggling with grammar.  During my research, I discovered a game called “So You Want to be an English Star?”  The first (logical) thing to do was to click on the button labeled “How to Play.”  And this is what I got:


A true English Star would know that there are three levels.  The game developer is more like an English Nebula.

(Please excuse my nerdy cleverness.)

The game’s questions are also a bit…well, questionable.  Going into more detail would mean I’d rip the game to shreds and use excessive amounts of profanity, so if I’ve piqued your curiosity, feel free to see for yourself how awful this game is.

I’m also sad to report that my search for grammar games wasn’t very successful.  Apparently there isn’t much demand for associating grammar with fun.  Meanwhile, somewhere in America, a teenage girl is giggling over her use of the word “redonk.”  Welcome to the deterioration of society!

Thankfully, my hunt was not 100% disastrous.  I did find a game called “Trapped” that combines punctuation practice, a variety of games, and a nice little animated story.  My future children will thank me later.

Stupidity: there’s an app for that

I’d like to express my deepest sympathies to anyone currently suffering from a stomach bug.  It’s day #4 for me and I’m ready to start trading the less favorable parts of my soul for a few nausea-free minutes.

As I was pouting in front of the television this morning, I decided to see what grammar apps were available for my phone.

Disclaimer:  Please leave now if, after reading that last sentence, you did any of the following:  a) rolled your eyes, b) called me a nerd, or c) judged me for pouting in front of the television.

The first app in the search results was called “Practice English Grammar – 1.”  I expanded the description of the app and I was horrified at what I saw:



Nowns are covered in this app?  Nowns?  And what the hell does “Question with question words” mean?

So, here is the complete list of topics covered:


Did you notice that “spelling” is not a topic covered?  Good thing–I’d hate for the makers of this app to look like complete morons.

A wild disagreement

Almost all of the posts on this blog are of misspellings and typos, but that doesn’t mean I don’t ever find more complex grammatical errors.  Exhibit A:  the sticker on the back of a bottle of Wet N Wild eye makeup remover:

The instructions for application indicate you should wipe a moistened cotton ball over your eyelids until “all traces of eye make-up has been removed.”  Ahem.  This statement appears to be absent of subject-verb agreement…

Since all traces of eye make-up is a plural subject, the sentence should read, “Moisten cotton ball and sweep over closed eyelids until all traces of eye make-up have been removed.”  This is basic grammar we’re supposed to learn in elementary school!

There’s a lesson in this post, kids:  if you don’t pay attention in school, the grammar police WILL find you and make fun of you.

Due for a grammar lesson

A good friend of mine dropped her children off at daycare recently and she sent me a photo of this sign that was on display:

It’s comforting to know that a very lucky group of young children is being exposed to such high-quality grammar. NOT!

Time to change schools!

In general, a school with a misspelled word on its reader board would have me doubting its quality of education. But to make matters worse, this is a private school that misspelled the word conferences. Parents, get your money back!

No class? Oh well, probably a waste of time anyway.

When in doubt, always choose C

The spring semester just came to an end, and I spent all five months just waiting to find a typo in one of my textbooks. Textbook typos are my favorite; it’s so ironic to see spelling and grammar errors in books that are used to teach things, is it not?

Well, I didn’t find any typos per se. However, at the end of each chapter in my macroeconomics textbook was a set of review questions, and in one particular chapter I stumbled upon an interesting multiple choice question. Pay close attention to options A and D (you may have to click the pic to enlarge):

Did you catch that? They were the exact same answer! They might as well have done this:

What color is the sky?
1. Blue
2. Brown
3. Green
4. Blue

So, I was entertained. It’s not a grammar error, but it is an editing error and I found it pretty funny. Doh!

[Source: Exploring Economics by Robert L. Sexton]


This was on Postsecret’s blog this week:

Not to sound like a nerd, but reading this made me giddy. Every day, I have to fight the temptation to edit my coworkers’ e-mails (I have an extra hard time not doing this to upper management). I can’t imagine the conniption fit I’d have if one of my teachers used improper grammar.