Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Love and War

Just as you celebrate a wedding anniversary and not a marriage anniversary, the recent milestone in the "war" in Iraq was the fifth anniversary of the invasion, not of the war. I'm just not sure what the fifth anniversary of a war (or a marriage) would be; it sounds like an observation of the full event -- the end, not the beginning.

In other news, a "terrorist suspect" would be a suspect who is a terrorist. (Maybe the guy with the Glock on that 7-Eleven surveillance tape looked like Osama bin Laden?) A person suspected of terrorism is a terrorism suspect, or, if you must, a suspected terrorist. It's murder suspect, after all, not murderer suspect.


doug said...

And what about all this nonsense lately about Hillary Clinton being the first serious "woman candidate" for president. Ugh.

Maybe you don't like requests for post topics in your comments, but I would love for you to address one grammar problem I can't seem to crack.

I guess the way to describe it would be confusion over making a possessive of a noun with a modifying clause. No matter how I try, I can't come up with anything that sounds right. Example:

A woman I work with's apartment building burned down.

The apartment building of a woman I work with burned down.

It tempts one to come up with some really yucky constructions: This woman, who I work with - her apartment building burned down. Or: I work with a woman. Her apartment building burned down.

There MUST be a solution. Is there?

Anonymous said...

I humbly suggest:

A coworker's apartment building burned down last night.

My coworker had her apartment building burn down.

Grammar and rules aside, I think the issue can be avoided all together by using a simpler term instead of "a woman I work with," which is the root of the problem.