Lyrics and Political Correctness

In our time of political correctness adherents rewriting history by demanding names and statues be altered, can the music industry be far behind? The long history of Rock ‘n’ Roll tells countless tales of teenage angst. But some of those songs may well be inappropriate by today’s standards. Please bear in mind that while writingContinue reading “Lyrics and Political Correctness”

An open letter to the overseers of the English language

An open letter to the keeper(s) of the English language: It has often been stated that languages are living, breathing things, they are constantly evolving and changing to accommodate current trends and needs. One needs only to consider the numerous additions to the English language that arose from increasing computer and particularly Internet usage; reboot,Continue reading “An open letter to the overseers of the English language”

Who vs Whom on Campus

On the front page of today’s Montreal Gazette there is an article about yesterday’s protest at McGill University. Concordia and McGill students decried the schools’ administrations lack of action on sexual misconduct accusations. Clearly an issue of great importance. But let me disrupt your thoughts on these allegations for a moment and turn to anotherContinue reading “Who vs Whom on Campus”

Amp or Ramp Up?

  You hear it often. As something gains intensity, or someone tries even harder. Ramp up. The North Koreans have ramped up their missile tests. The quarterback is going to have to ramp up his efforts during the last two minutes if his team is to win. The police have ramped up their efforts toContinue reading “Amp or Ramp Up?”

Welcome to Feb-ROO-ary

The month is five days old, the Super Bowl is upon us, the days are getting longer, if only ever so slowly, and there is a snowfall warning in effect, no doubt about it, it is February.  I used to dread this time of year, a very long stretch without a holiday  (in Quebec weContinue reading “Welcome to Feb-ROO-ary”

I Nominate “Pivot” as 2016 Most Overused Campaign Word

After what feels like decades the US election campaign is down to the last four days. Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump are picking up the pace as they crisscross the country in a last effort to secure votes. Perhaps the only group more fatigued than the candidates are the umpteen surrogates who continue to popContinue reading “I Nominate “Pivot” as 2016 Most Overused Campaign Word”

Trump: Uncharted Not Unchartered

As I write this the 24-hour news channels are in raptures over the latest Donald Trump gaffe. Wall-to-wall coverage of his gutter-mouth chat with someone called Billy Bush in 2005 has kept the news mills grinding overtime, unearthing numerous other examples of Trump’s misogynist tendencies as illustrated on the Howard Stern radio show. The wayContinue reading “Trump: Uncharted Not Unchartered”

Coming Attractions: Bridget Jones’ Apostrophe S

When I was a boy going to grade school, way back when dinosaurs roamed the earth, tramping five miles to and fro, somehow uphill both ways, they taught us English grammar. We parsed sentences and memorized irregular verbs til the cows came home. They pounded rules into our fertile young minds, then just as hardContinue reading “Coming Attractions: Bridget Jones’ Apostrophe S”

Look, The Thing Is …

While enjoying a frosty beer in my local Irish pub on a very hot afternoon recently a fellow imbiber,  originally from Massachusetts, but now a die-hard Montrealer brought up an interesting topic. We have often chatted, and share a love of words and enjoy discussing the oddities and the subtle differences in how the same language, English,Continue reading “Look, The Thing Is …”