Saturday, December 29, 2012

Garner covers 2012

Bryan Garner collects some news of the year in language and writing. A sample:

A Brooklyn resident contested a parking ticket based on the meaning of the preposition to. According to the New York Times, Mark Vincent parked under a sign that read: “No standing April to October.” He decided that to meant that parking was prohibited until the month of October began. Because it was October 2, he reasoned that he was within the law. Supported by Oxford and Merriam-Webster dictionaries, he argued that to means “up to but not including,” while through means “to and including.” Although he did not win his appeal, the new sign reads: “No standing April 1–Sept. 30.”
I wish that Garner’s compendium came with links: they’d make for hours of happy (and sometimes dismaying) browsing. If you were reading Orange Crate Art in April, you saw a a post with a link to the Times article on to v. through.

[Bryan Garner, author of Garner’s Modern American Usage (2009), offers a free Usage Tip of the Day. You can sign up at Orange Crate Art is a Garner-friendly site.]

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