Friday, October 31, 2008

I Should Dress as Lynne Truss for Halloween!

Despite the title, this posting has nothing to do with Halloween. Instead, it's about another badly punctuated t-shirt from CafePress. Alison, who has a blog on sent me a link to this shirt:

Alison writes, "I'm assuming that it's not an ENGLISH teacher who coined that slogan/created that design, but...? You never know!"

I certainly hope not. Thanks, Alison!

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Not Actually Very Honorable

Turi snapped this photo at the University of Nevada, Reno, during the Race for the Cure breast cancer walk/run:

"I can see why no one wanted to stand by the sign," Turi writes.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Catastrophe News Network

Another day, another apostrophe catastrophe from my friend Merry. This time it's from

If you look closely at the middle of this screenshot (click to enlarge it), you'll see that the writer added an 's to the end of Obama. "Obama's slams McCain..." doesn't make much sense.

Thanks again, Merry! Check out her other submissions here.

Greek Cheese's Revenge

Jan from New Hampshire has seen this badly punctuated sign at two different branches of the same supermarket chain, so they must be coming from the corporate headquarters.

She writes, "This particular notice, however, attracted a fellow apostrophe
hunter, and I thought it was a nice touch." Click on the photo to enlarge it.

You can see Jan's other grocers' apostrophe catastrophes over at Apostrophe Abuse.

Thanks, Jan!

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Pertaining to Upcoming Events

Remember the e-mail I received that said "your invited" to a Halloween party? I've gotten it about five more times since then, and it annoys me every time. Unfortunately, that's not the only Halloween your/you're confusion out there. When I was buying some costume accessories online, I got the following message:

Also, there should be a period at the end of that sentence. These guys should switch their your/you're with Mos Def's. In this political video, he declares, "Your an American!"

Thanks to my friend Rich for sending the Mos Def video. It's most definitely a catastrophe. (Sorry)

Monday, October 27, 2008

Extra, Extra! Read All About the Bad Punctuation!

Krissie uploaded this photo to Apostrophe Catastrophes' facebook group:

The Wall Street Journal is a highly respected newspaper, but this is its second appearance on this blog. Can we revoke the WSJ's Pulitzer Prizes?

Thanks, Krissie!

Friday, October 24, 2008

Fashion Catastrophe!

George uploaded this photo to the Apostrophe Catastrophes facebook group:

This shop, located at the northern end of the Atlantic City boardwalk, has always bugged him. And for good reason! Unlike the fashion's at Rona's, good punctuation is always in style.

Thanks, George!

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Caesar Was an Honorable Man

Caesars Palace is awesome because it has Cher, but shouldn't it also have an apostrophe?

It could belong to Julius (Caesar's) or more than one member of the family (Caesars'), but I think there should be some sort of possessive punctuation there.

Update: My research tells me that the original owner of Caesars Palace intentionally left out the apostrophe to make everyone feel like royalty. I suppose that sort of makes sense. Thoughts?

And speaking of Caesars, this pizza place in Somerville can't seem to make up its mind.

Apostrophe or no apostrophe? That is the question. Oh, wait, that's a different play.

Sexy Sarah Palin!

Apostrophe Catastrophes' first video posting comes to us courtesy of my mom. It features some punctuation errors, but it's also just hilarious in its own right.

Thanks, Mom!

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Will They Play Kool & the Gang?

My friend Heather sent me this rather bizarre punctuation error that she saw in downtown Boston:

I'm not sure if that's a period or a comma, but it's certainly not right. It's sort of the opposite of this one. Also, it seems as if this store ran out of space to write "rings," or, perhaps, "ring,s."

Thanks, Heather!

Tuesday, October 21, 2008


Red Sox Nation, I think it was my fault. The Sox won on Saturday night, so I should have worn the same outfit for Sunday night's game. But I didn't. Instead, I wore a new t-shirt that I got at a bar last week. So, I guess the shirt was bad luck. But why? I went to the Soxology web site and discovered three apostrophe catastrophes.

Check out the red-and-white banner: Mens, womens, childrens. None of these are words. But at least they got the punctuation right (men's) underneath.

Update: I saw a link for the Soxology site today because they are sponsoring a charity bike ride, and I noticed that the punctuation error have been corrected. Go Sox!

Monday, October 20, 2008

It's Tedy Bruschi's Schedule

Now that the Red Sox have been eliminated, New Englanders can give their full attention to the Patriots, Celtics, and Bruins. Jim from Campton, NH, will certainly be watching the Pats on Monday Night Football this evening. One of his local bars has this handy schedule on the wall, but check out the apostrophe catastrophe!

Budweiser may be the king of beers, but their punctuation isn't very impressive.

Thanks, Jim! Check out Jim's web site here.

Friday, October 17, 2008

It's All Greek to Me

David sent me this photo of an office building sign in Phoenix:

Unless some guy named Athen owns the cafe, it's a big, fat, Greek apostrophe catastrophe.

Thanks, David!

Thursday, October 16, 2008

The Person Who Wrote this Sign Is Not My Hero

What is it about the word heroes that is so difficult for everyone? Smoochiefrog was dismayed to find this sign at an elementary school:

"If they're honoring Hiro from the TV show Heroes, they spelled his name wrong," writes Smoochiefrog. "If not, well you get the idea. It's wrong no matter how you spin it."

Let's hope this teacher isn't in charge of teaching punctuation. Thanks, SF.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Punctuation for Dummies

Peter wrote to me that he was concerned about an apostrophe catastrophe committed by John Wiley & Sons, publisher of the For Dummies series. Their web site appears to be catastrophe-free, but they apparently sent out a badly punctuated promotional blurb to a bunch of conferences. Peter found the same error on seven different conference web sites. Here's one example:

The second sentence begins, "Among it's many imprints." Don't they employ copy editors?

Check out Peter's books blog here. Thanks, Peter!

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Permanent Catastrophes

You need a special kind of laser to fix these apostrophe catastrophes:

Thanks to Phoebe for sending me this photo of matching badly punctuated tattoos. In case you can't read the small print, the tattoos say "Hells Belle's." Also, since the images are of bells, one could argue that these count as misspellings, too. Thoughts? One of the girls is a friend of Phoebe's and the other is a friend of her friend. Both shall remain nameless.

Yet another example of why I'm investing in the tattoo-removal industry.

Monday, October 13, 2008

Seeing Double

A reader named Nick sent me this apostrophe catastrophe from

"It's the first time I've ever seen a double apostrophe," Nick write. "Truly baffling."

If the headline writer has been hanging out with Lindsay Lohan, he's probably drunk and high, so that might explain it. Plus, isn't it fitting that these apostrophes are straight white lines?

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Wake Up and Smell the Bad Spelling

Spotted: bad spelling in New York City

No, this error isn't punctuation-related, but it's pretty bad nonetheless. Also, it should say iced coffee, not ice coffee. And let's not even talk about the bad clip art.

Friday, October 10, 2008

I'm Pretty Sure You Wouldn't See This at Brown

My cousin Joe went to a college in Rhode Island last weekend for a basketball tournament and spotted this classic apostrophe catastrophe:

Look for it the next time you visit Community College of Rhode Island. [Insert your own joke here.]

Thanks, Joe!

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Rolling My Eyes at the Local News

Megan captured this apostrophe catastrophe by taking a camera-phone photo of her TV:

She writes, "The local news has dubious value anyway, aside from learning what everyday vent or object is out to harm my children this week, but this just seals the deal!"

Well, KENS 5 has value to this blog since it aired a glaring error! Thanks, Megan!

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

My Heroes Know How to Use Punctuation Correctly

Corinne took this photo of a double apostrophe catastrophe on a highway in Queens, NY:

Fittingly, Corinne was on her way home from an English teaching methods course when she spotted this catastrophe. Notice how the two errant apostrophes don't even match.

Thanks, Corinne! Check out Corinne's poetry blog here.

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

And Speaking of the Red Sox...

You can buy tickets from this place on Brookline Ave if you aren't put off by their poor punctuation.

Thanks again, Merry!

Red Sox, You Are the Only, Only, ONLY...

I walked up this Fenway Park ramp a couple of times last night because I didn't think they were really serious about the only thing.

Last night's game, however, was the opposite of a catastrophe. Bring on Tampa Bay!

Monday, October 6, 2008

Another Blemish on the McCain-Palin Campaign

First we had the Student's for McCain pen. Then we had the badly punctuated anti-Palin sign. The score was tied until Misa sent me this:

Misa also points out that using the LOVE symbol is probably a copyright violation.

Check out CafePress for all of your Christian's Love Sarah Palin needs. They've got polo shirts, coffee mugs, baseball caps, and even thongs.

Sunday, October 5, 2008

I Would Never Go to this Party

Sifting through three days' worth of e-mails, I was dismayed to find this:

No, thanks!

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

While I Appreciate the Office Space Reference...

If there are two guys named Bob, it's wrong to call them "the Bob's."

Thanks to George for finding this apostrophe catastrophe on