Monday, November 16, 2009

Another Permanent Catastrophe

Rick Reilly's latest column focuses on athletes who have bad tattoos. Laser tattoo removal is painful and expensive, so if you're going to get inked, you'd better make sure the message is grammatically correct. There's not much room on Penn State tight end Andrew Quarless' arm to add the missing apostrophe, so he's got a catastrophe for life.

"Quarless may be God's gift to football, but not to punctuation," Reilly writes. "It lacks an apostrophe, to say nothing of humility."

Thanks to my friend Bayard for sending Reilly's column my way! And thanks to Rick Reilly for the entertaining read.


Charles Simone said...

Where does one put an apostrophe when writing something vertically?

Becky said...

That is a very good question.

I would do it like this:


But I have seen it with the apostrophe on the same line as the letter before the "s." There's no good way, really.

MER said...

Better than that guy who got the BC logo tattooed on his chest...and is now transferring.

m.vega said...

Actually, with an apostrophe it would read "God is Gift" not too sure an apostrophe is really needed.

Becky said...

Yes, but another meaning for "God's Gift" is "a gift belonging to God."

Jeff said...

GODS' GIFT would be correct." S' " shows ownership of.

Becky said...

Jeff, assuming there is only one god, it should be apostrophe then s (God's) to show ownership.

Miranda said...

Actually, that's a common misconception. We even teach that in school incorrectly.

Technically, he's correct. Apostrophes are not supposed to be used to show ownership. They are for contractions. Not many people realize this, since teachers and schools of all types are pretty committed to it.

M.Vega- You are correct.

Becky said...

@ Miranda: How does one show ownership then?