Posts filed under “language”

Telegraph Mention

I have been mentioned in the fourth rule of an article in the Telegraph by Tom Chivers on “Internet Rules and Laws.” Greetings, Telegraph readers! To be clear, yes, I used “ignoramii” with a sense of deliberate irony, and the quoted text was part of a larger venture on Begging The Question — the site […]


In “Begging the Question, Again” on the Times Topics weblog, NYT deputy news editor Philip Corbett talks about the misuse of the phrase, and briefly mentions, my pedantic language site. I was alerted to this by the sudden flurry of “” inbound links in my referrer log that day. BTQ’s continued growth in popularity […]

Bush, Arroyo, Carrots, Sticks

President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo was in town yesterday to pay a visit to our neighbor at 16th and Penn NW (funny guy from Texas, you should meet him sometime). Now, much has been made of a supposedly offensive statement he made — “I am reminded of the great talent of the- of our Philippine-Americans when I […]


Cool, this deli has free sulfite *and* MSG! (SulfMSG.jpg uploaded by brownpau.)

Have the Water Current an Empress

This is a sticker on the front of the water dispenser Dad just got. Made in China. We still don’t know what it means, and the hot water spout still doesn’t work. Anyone got an empress handy? We’re fresh out.

Note on Family Nomenclature

According to the Relatives Chart, the standard English label for a first cousin’s child would be “first cousin, once removed.” Filipinos, however, use the term “pamangkin” — preferably translated to English as “nephew” or “niece” — to clarify the generational removal, distinguishing cousins (“pinsan”) from their children, as well as from more distant relatives further […]

WJLA: They’re Not Good with Their Grammar There

Whoever does news graphics for TV’s ABC7 News in DC fell prey to their/there confusion last week. Oops. More on “they’re, their, and there.” It’s okay. People make mistakes. There, there. Reborn!

Meet my latest pet project: Beg The Question. (Or BTQ, for short.) Although BTQ started out as a silly little April Fool’s gimmick, I recently decided to make better use of the domain by turning it into a concise central venue to inform the general public of this all-too-common idiomatic travesty. Now, you can chastise […]

Proactive Utilization of Synergistic Vocabulary

[stynxno] what’s a good definition for “buzzwords?” [brownpau] Buzzwords are proactive utilizations of synergistic vocabulary seeking to produce paradigmatic value within a semantic ecosystem of business architecture. (shamelessly reposted from my LJ.)


There’s a subtle pollution creeping up on our media, our literature, and our speech; a horrific piece of abuse which threatens the very fabric of our way of thinking. It’s BTQ abuse, and it’s time to take action to end it, before it destroys our language. March on April 1st to End BTQ Abuse Now! […]