With all the excitement over the cricket yesterday, I completely forgot to blog what I meant to blog about, namely the abuse of the humble apostrophe, that little mark that can totally change the meaning of a sentence.
Yes, I know it’s a bit Eats, Shoots and Leaves-ish, but it really gets on my tits when this most subtle of keystrokes is abused and misused, especially by folk who should know better.
What brought this on is the ad for Matalan featured above, appearing on the back cover of You magazine in yesterday’s Mail on Sunday. (Apologies, but the Day of Rest wouldn’t be complete without a Peter Hitchens rant about the “useless tories.”)
Click on it if you want to read a larger version, but I can save you the bother. It reads:
two stag do’s,
a mate’s birthday and
a week in the office…
all for £60
So how did this presumably university educated copywriter get “mate’s” right and “do’s” wrong? And what did he/she think “do’s” actually says if not “do is?”
My real worry is that he/she did know what he/she was doing but assumed that the rest of us wouldn’t be able to handle “dos” and so threw in the apostrophe so we’d know what they were on about. Aaargh!