JMC 194 April 23, 2009 Today Comma splice Rules for commas and dependent + independent clauses Moving on to S-V agreement hot spots Plan for review/final exam Quiz But first: ?Multitasking can be defined as screwing everything up simultaneously.? Source Unknown ?Self-respect is the fruit of discipline; the sense of dignity grows with the ability to say no to oneself.? Abraham J. Heschel ?Is there no respect of place, persons, nor time in you?? Shakespeare, Twelfth Night ?Facebook is not for school time.? Andrea Decker Comma Splice Connecting two independent clauses with just a comma, no independent clause: There?s nothing wrong with Facebook, it?s not appropriate for use in class. 3 ways to fix a comma splice: Add a coordinating conjunction. Make it two sentences, using a period. Use a semicolon. Rules for connecting dependent and independent clauses: If the dependent clause comes first, use a comma: Because you were on Facebook, you missed my hilarious joke. If the dependent clause comes second, you don?t need the comma: You missed my hilarious joke because you were on Facebook. Subject-verb agreement You can tell when it?s wrong. Your ear tells you a lot, but it won?t tell you everything! My cats is crazy! When is a subject always singular? When is a subject always plural? When could it be either? What are some potential trouble spots? Always-singular subject Each, either, anyone, everyone, much, one, no one, nothing, someone: Each is special in its own way. Anyone is welcome. Everyone is invited. Much is unknown about the Romanovs. One wonders if Britney?s lost it for good. Always singular Always singular: No one is going to rain on my parade! Nothing hurts like heartache. Someone?s in the kitchen with Dinah. Sometimes these words are adjectives: Each option has its merits. Either color looks good on you. Every day is different. Be careful ?Anyone? and ?someone? take a singular verb, which can cause gender trouble: Someone left ???? car keys at my house. Wrong: Someone left their car keys at my house. Right: Someone left his or her car keys at my house. Better yet: Someone left a set of car keys at my house. Always singular ?It? as a subject: It scares me. It?s not salad I like; it?s salad dressing. ?The number? (Note: not ?A number?) The number of adopted animals has skyrocketed. But: A number of animals are available for adoption. (An unknown number; presumably more than one animal, therefore plural.) Always singular Units of money, time, etc. Fifty dollars is a lot for a tie. Nine years of solitary confinement has taken its toll. Organizations and groups My family is dysfunctional. Doctors without Borders is sending supplies. Food Spaghetti and meatballs is my favorite meal. Medical problems Diabetes is serious. An Exception! Bands and Teams What about plural-sounding sports teams and bands? In cases like these, a group takes a plural verb: The Suns are going all the way this season. The Beatles are the most important musical group in pop music history. The Shins are her favorite band. The Sun Devils have an impressive record. Try it an see: Does your ear agree? The Suns is great? Always singular Adding stuff onto a singular subject doesn?t change the verb: Supernanny Jo Frost, together with the desperate parents, tries to reform unruly kids. Your textbook, as well as a pencil and paper, is required at each class period. A word of warning: These constructions can be clunky. Rewrite? Always singular When a compound subject joined by ?and? refers to the same person or thing: The president, founder and CEO took sole responsibility for the disaster. The top student, star athlete, prom king and valedictorian of the class of 2007 was Christopher. Either/Or and Neither/Nor In sentences using these constructions, the noun closest to the verb controls the verb number: Either burgers or pizza is fine with me. Either pizza or burgers are fine with me. Either the piano or the drums have to be sold. Either the drums or the piano has to be sold. Neither my sister nor my brothers like tomatoes. Neither my brothers nor my sister likes tomatoes. Final Exam info: If you haven?t e-mailed me about a SCHOOL conflict, you must. School conflicts will be honored. Otherwise, you must take the final on May 8 at 9:50. The final is worth 25 percent of your grade Check out Blackbord to let me know what topics you want to review. Next week is review. That?s all.
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