Thursday, May 17, 2012

Comforting Ms. Pedantic

How do you comfort Ms. Pedantic?
You hug her and pat her on the back repeating
 There, they're, their.

Ms. Pedantic, c'est moi! This was my side line back in the day when I was 'working'. I know this may be surprising to many of you given the poor editing of this blog (as pointed out to me by several) but I am very good at criticizing others and was routinely handed manuscripts to edit. I was armed with just a few of the old spelling saws I learned as a child such as:
  1. You can't sepARATe A RAT from a cat.
  2. The princiPAL is our PAL.
  3. Old AGE is a trAGEdy.
So the last one I didn't use much given the unemotional nature of our writing (just the facts ma'am), but my colleagues were batting 500 with the correct spelling of separate. This was despite a major part of our our job involved separating the desired from the undesired. We made new compounds to be tested as possible drugs for various therapeutic areas. You put A and B together and hope to obtain C but instead you are left with a mix of A, B, C with bits of D, E, F and the rest of the alphabet sometimes. It also isn't always clear which C is. As my pal with whom I will spend the week biking used to sing to Offspring's tune: You've gotta keep them separated!!! while performing this laborious task.

Actually only my one time boss used to abuse rule two routinely. I would patiently explain for the umpteenth time that although 'principal' could be an adjective and a noun, 'principle' is only used as a noun and if he can't remember that (I did consider the possibility he was inserting this each time as a test of my alertness), use the word 'main' instead. Another colleague used 'tenant' instead of 'tenet'. Principle would be a fine substitution in that case.

And why do I need comforting? This week's news is so shocking to me: a game-changer. But it really isn't about me, it is about my son.  I am so sad for him.

Yesterday, according to Statcounter, I received a record number of hits for the day but it was not yesterday's post that interested people. It was an old post  What color is your tumor?
From what I can tell, it is on some 'natural cure' website. On the off chance that you, my new reader came from that site, this is my advice to you.

Baking soda will not cure your cancer. Also, despite its simple structure and availability, there is nothing NATURAL about baking soda.

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