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Thursday, 18 April 2024


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I noticed, but assumed that it was an extremely close family. ;)

It might have been a boarding house at the time. Although that would be pretty weird, too.

Seems doubtful that both parents were born in the same house. Unless ...

I didn't pick up on the error you pointed out. I am not sure I would even call "parents" a grammatical error unless you meant for it to be singular all along.

However, I might have said, "Up here you hear stories like those," instead of "this."

(I am sure I just made a grammatical error somewhere in this comment.)

Another issue (I think) - isn’t the same “sentence” that begins with “Although” also actually just a dependent clause?


Editors Needed Everywhere (OT)

"I find mental decline more interesting that physical decline"

Shouldn't that be than?

[That's one of my "persistent typos," something I mistype often. --Mike]

John and Jane Smith had a child, Mary who was born at home in their house. The following year they sold the house to Jack and Jenny Jones, who had a child, Samuel who was born at home in their house. When she grew up, Mary moved to the city. Samuel did the same when he grew up.
Years later, Mary and Samuel returned to the town to attend a street party to celebrate the centenary of the founding of the United States Of America.
As conversations do in small towns, they turned to the matter of who grew up where. On Mary and Samuel finding out that they were both born in the same house, they felt drawn to one another. And as chance would have it, the house in which they were born came up for sale and they moved in.
And the rest, years later was left to a photographer and blogger to write.

[If I were to intentionally make an extraordinary statement such as "both of my friend's parents grew up in the same house," I would be at pains to explain the anomaly, and would probably also casually cite my source, as I often do when I say things like "I heard this from so-and-so," or "he told me that...". I might also qualify it, saying something like "I don't really know if this is true, but...." I want you to know where I'm coming from (even if it weakens my argument) because it helps you evaluate the truth-value of the things I say. --Mike]

ACG is right about the sentence beginning "Although". What follows or precedes the phrase beginning with "although" has to be an exception to what is contained in the phrase beginning with "although". For example, "The ground was dry although it had rained because it had been covered by an awning" or "Although it had rained, the ground was dry because it was covered by an awning".

Although you have older friends who were born in the house they live in, what is the contrast you wish to make?

Surely the sentence should have been "Although I have older friends here in rural Central New York who were born in the house they live in, I have one, a guy of about 77, whose parents were born in the house he lives in."

The "and" in the sentence is an inappropriate link to the following phrase given that the preceding phrase began with "Although". Alternatively you could correct the sentence simply by omitting the word "although".

I'm sure that there's a grammatical term for this error but I'm 76 and have forgotten the names for all of the grammatical rules and structures drummed into me during my school days from the early 1950's to the mid 1960's.

["Although it had rained, the ground was dry..." is a grammatical sentence. The dependent clause simply comes first, which is fine. It means the same thing as "The ground was dry, although it had rained, because...." --Mike]

I grew up in Tennessee. Parents was possible if not probable.

I picked up on the dependent clause and thought that the word “and” was the problem.
I’m sure that somewhere in NYC there is someone that lives and was born in the same apartment building as both their parents. I know of several that grew up in the same apartment building as both their parents.

You’re editing yourself?

A bigger grammatical problem with your featured footnote is that it is a long auxiliary (hope that's the right word) clause ("Although ...."), but there is no main clause.

Yeah, I quickly retreated when I couldn't make heads nor tails of the 'grammatical error' sleight of hand. As other readers pointed out, more an error of logic or other related deductive science. That said, just another glaring example of being completely blind to the in your face obvious!

I get when a small site like TOP has errors slip through, but what gets me is large media sites that make egregious mistakes. Copyediting is a luxury no sites seem inclined to avail themselves of and instead rely upon the writer, who has disadvantages in finding mistakes. I am certain I've even seen howlers on thenewyorker.com, a publisher infamous for accuracy.

One strategy for the small guy to use is to have the computer read back the text aloud. It's a great way to find the errors like duplicated words that the brain wallpapers over when proofreading.


At first, I focused on the phrasing 'whose parents were born in the house he lives in. Up here you hear stories like this.' I would have written the order differently, inverting it such that 'he lives in the house where his parents were born.'. If nothing else it could seem to suggest the parents were born after the son.

I guess one parent was born there, that person's parents sold the house and moved, and the new owners had a child there, who later went on to marry the current resident's other parent. Done and done, and presumably Robert is your mother's brother.


I had to re-read the footnote several times, waiting for the rest of the sentence. Perhaps a comma is needed after "although."

Assuming his parents are not the same age - in many marriages, the wife is several years younger than the husband; in my older brother's case, his wife is 14 years his junior - then it's entirely possible both were born in the house he lives in now.

In this case, the paternal grandparents could have had a child, moved away when the child (the 77-year-old's father) was 2, the maternal grandparents moved in and had a girl a couple years later. Definitely within the realm of possibility!

Just call it fiction.

Isn't there a lot of inbreeding in the backwoods? (Allegedly)

Oh, I was looking at "Up here you hear stories like this." Shouldn't that be 'stories like these'? Or 'stories like this one'? But what do I know, I'm from the Netherlands,

Never mind Mike, you are covered, just do what adherents to the religion of peace do.

Whilst capable of weaving a perfect rug, they deliberately ensure that there is a pattern error, however small, in order to demonstrate that only Allah is perfect.

It is a funny old world.


Oh and Ikea must be followers too, since everything that one buys there has something missing, or broken when one gets it home.

In the post you say "A standing desk is open space..." when I think you mean "in" not is. Just sayin'. :-)

[Fixed now. Thanks! --Mike]

Is there such a thing as "..rural Central New York .."?

[Helpfully(!!), various agencies of the State of New York divide up all the regions differently. According to the State of New York Dept. of Civil Service, I'm in Region 4, The Finger Lakes, not Region 3, Central New York, which comprises the nine counties around Syracuse. YMMV. --Mike]

What really gets me, after flying in to Bristol airport, going in to the place to collect your luggage, there is a sign proclaiming,
"These doors are alarmed"

It's not just in words, that one needs an editor.

I test things for a living, sometimes to specific industry or regulatory standards. One standard indicated the following force should be applied:

Force = A + B * C

Note, in the regulatory document, the equation was written exactly as typed, without parentheses.

I applied exactly that force, but the result was rejected. The examiner wanted to see a test to:

Force = (A + B) * C

As one may see, this would have been a larger load. By basic alegebraic convention on order of operation, testing to his desired load would require paratheses on the original equation.

My redirect to educational materials on order of operation, and a suggestion that the regulation be updated, was not well received.

Easy. Change "and one" to "there's one" and Bob's your uncle!

My featured comment has a grammatical error.

[Fixed now. Thanks! --Mike]

Just read a NYTimes article title of “Taylor Swift Could Use an Editor”

so there ya go

And yet ‘to intentionally make’ goes unnoticed!

[I have no problems with split infinitives, except in Latin or German! --Mike]

Although you began the sentence with a subordinate clause.

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