Dangit! I am totally guilty of screwing up the phrase “he got his just desserts.” It’s “deserts,” as in what one deserves. It has nothing to do with sugary treats. Drat! According to Mignon Forgerty, author of “Grammar Girl’s 101 Troublesome Words You’ll Master” grammar is the elusive yet crucial verbal mistress–every one of us has a weak link. Which one of the following makes you cringe?
It’s astonishing how many Internet commenters get this one wrong. Rise above the crowd. Try to get this one right. It’s a low bar.
“Lose” means to be defeated or to misplace something, and “loose” means “not tight.” “Lose” is the older term: we get it from Old English. “Loose” didn’t appear until Middle English.
“Simple” can be good or bad. It means basic or easy. For example, you could compliment a room for having a simple, clean style or a gadget for being simple to use. You can think of the “ic” on the end of “simplistic” as meaning “Ick, something is missing!”
Begs the Question
Waiting With Bated Breath
Nevertheless, although the Oxford English Dictionary doesn’t include any examples of “anniversary” being used to talk about anything other than annual events, anyone who’s been around an American high school will certainly have heard kids talking about their monthly relationship milestones in terms of an “anniversary.” It’s common, but it’s just not right.