You write the top, I’ll write the bottom

In this installment of “You Write the Top, I’ll Write the Bottom,” I’m scratching my head, wondering if there were two errors in the sheriff’s office: one on a rug and one on a sign:

fp rug sign

Did anyone at read the article before writing this? Anyone? Maybe if they had, they wouldn’t be producing conflicting information.

I’m a writer, not a mathematician!

Don’t blame the writer for Yahoo! Style! She’s a fashion writer, not a mathematician. OK, so it doesn’t take great math skills (or even third-grade arithmetic skills) to know that 2004 isn’t “nearly a decade ago.” It’s more than a decade ago:

nearly decade style

I’m not trying to get into this writer’s head, but I can imagine she thinks that nearly means “a little more or a little less.” It doesn’t. It means “almost but not quite” (according to the American Heritage Dictionary).

That isn’t going to gain much traction

The fact that the writer for the Yahoo! front page thinks this makes sentence shouldn’t cause you to jeer:

fp traction

It wasn’t the fact that didn’t gain traction in France, it was a negative reaction to President Obama’s absence that didn’t gain traction. Now I wonder if a negative reaction to that sentence will gain traction with readers.

Knowledge of geography optional

You’re probably familiar with Nice, the city in France. Did you know there’s another city called Nice, on the southeast coast of the Mediterranean Sea. I guess that would put it somewhere in Egypt:

nice news

Of course, it’s possible that the writer for Yahoo! News meant the French city. That would be on the southeast coast of France, on the Mediterranean Sea.

Kate Middleton gives birth to second child!

The Duchess of Cambridge has given birth to her second child! Where have I been?! Why didn’t I hear about this from legitimate news sources? Why must I read it first on Yahoo! Style? If you can get past the beginning of this truly screwed-up sentence until the end, you’ll uncover the news the whole world has been waiting to hear:

birth of second style

I cannot possibly untangle that string of words, entwined like a dish of spaghetti. I have no idea what the writer meant except the duchess’s dress and hat welcomed the president of Singapore. Oh, also, that “the birth of her second child” probably should be “she is expecting her second child.” But I quibble.

Anna Faris and Allison Janney: Disappointing

I was soooo looking forward to watching the Golden Globes award show this Sunday, in part because of the hosts Amy Poehler and Tina Fey. I love, love those women. Imagine my disappointment when I read this on Yahoo! Style:

anna faris

Boo-hoo? No, I’m not crying in my Ovaltine. I just did a little fact-checking (something writers and editors at Yahoo! Style should learn to do) and guess what!? Ms. Faris and Ms. Janney will be hosting the People’s Choice Awards, not the Golden Globes.

Is this the first of many?

This may be the first of many mistakes of this kind we see on Yahoo!. Today, January 1, 2015, it appeared on Yahoo! Style:

this is 2014 style

Stick to what you know

My advice to the writer for Yahoo! Celebrity: Stick to what you know. And it ain’t grammar:

oxford comma celeb

Justin Bieber did not commit an Oxford comma violation. An Oxford comma (also called a serial comma) is a comma before and or or in a series of three or more items. The writer is just plain wrong — and arrogant, ignorant, and pretentious.

Another third-grade science challenge

Aren’t these salt and pepper shakers cute?! According to Yahoo! Style, they make a perfect gift:

hedgehog 2 style

Of course, I don’t exactly trust Yahoo!’s writers for their recommendations for gifts or anything else. This is the description the “Yahoo Style Editors” gave to those two sets:

hedgehog 1 style

So, looks like there’s some more writing professionals who could use a little education in third-grade science.

How about taking a third-grade science class?

That’s a lovely picture on Yahoo! DIY, isn’t it?

steer 2 diy

The only problem is the description, by a writer who could use a review of third-grade science:

steer 1 diy

That’s a deer, not a steer, dear.

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