Episode 2: I see this every day and it drives me NUTS

Today we’re going to start out with an easy one.

This is one I see every day. That’s two words.

It’s an everyday occurrence. That’s one word.

No, I haven’t gone silly. Well, maybe I have a little over this all-too-common issue.

And when I say “silly” it’s just a euphemism for around-the-bend nuts.

When everyday is an adjective – that’s the word that’s put in front of a noun to modify the noun, you know, add to it – it’s one word.

It’s an everyday occurrence.

Often though, that one word should be two. It happens every day. We serve chowder every day (not that I just saw a sign that had it wrong or anything).

We serve chowder every day, but lobster is not an everyday menu item.

It was two words the first time, one word the second time. It’s okay to mix it up and use both in a sentence, by the way.

I know your auto correct wants to make it one word and you know the difference, but don’t want to take the time to make the correction. People will understand what you mean, right? What’s the big deal?

Sure, people may understand what you mean. But you can’t always assume they will. The less clear you are, the less you abide by the consistent rules of grammar or usage, the less likely you are to make your point. You want to be understood, right? Make sure it’s them, not you, if you’re not.

On top of it, once you slip into bad habits it’s hard to stop. Sure, today it’s everyday in a text. Tomorrow it’ll be in the cover letter for the job you really want, or in that novel you’ve been laboring over. And someone just like me – okay not JUST like me, but like me enough – is going to say, “Wow, this person doesn’t know the difference between everyday and every day. What other mistakes will he make if he can’t get that right?”

Let’s start a movement. If you make sure every day that you get that right, people aren’t going to look at you as just another everyday chump who doesn’t know grammar and usage, but as a star.

I don’t have a new episode every day, so this give you something to think about it your everyday life until next time.

Thanks for listening.

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