Author Archives: Zay Smith

Or maybe a wall of some kind

ISIS Propaganda
News Headline: “GOP campaign rhetoric on Muslims harms U.S. security efforts: Homeland Security chief.”
News Headline: “Trump and Cruz are playing right into ISIS’ hands, CIA analyst warns.”
We may want to close our borders to Republicans until further notice.
Just be safe.

QT trickle-on economics update

Minimum Wage
Alabama Republican Gov. Robert Bentley signed a bill blocking minimum-wage increases in the state’s cities and towns shortly after giving four of his Cabinet members an 80 percent raise.

QT Grammar R Us Seminar on the English Language

QT Grammar
News Item: “. . . A revealing exercise is to spend an evening switching back and forth between FOX, CNN and MSNBC. . . .”
Doug Dahlgren, a Chicago reader, writes:
“ About ‘back and forth between’: Doesn’t pointing to three networks dictate that ‘among’ should be used?”
Yes.
“Between”  is  correct for the relation of two things.
“Among” is for three or more.
QT will not spend time going back and forth among minor exceptions.
And is it time for QT’s quadrennial reminder that it isn’t “catty-corner” or “kitty-corner,” but “cater-corner”?
Evidently.

WRITE TO QT:  qt@zaysmith.com

From Poor QT’s Almanack

Battle of Falkoeping
On this day in history 627 years ago, the Danes defeated the Swedes at the Battle of Falkoeping, which seemed important at the time.

Tender moments

Valentine's Day
Men are expected  to spend more than double what women spend on Valentine’s Day this year–an average of $133.61 compared to $62.14, a study found.
QT renews its Valentine advice for men wooing women:
When the gifts have been exchanged, the man should lean gently forward.
He should look into the woman’s eyes.
Then he should whisper:
“You owe me $71.47.”
She’ll laugh.
She really will.

QT Grammar R Us Seminar on the English Language

Hearts and Guts
News Item: “. . . the heart-wrenching story of. . . .”
News Item: “. . . the gut-rending songs of. . . .”
Rich Rzadski, a Chicago reader, reminds us that it isn’t “heart-wrenching” and “gut-rending” but “heart-rending” and “gut-wrenching.”
And as we are heading  into the political season:
Events can be both stomach-churning and stomach-turning.
Not to mention mind-boggling and mind-numbing.
And will be.

WRITE TO QT:  qt@zaysmith.com

QT Grammar R Us Seminar on the English Language

CIA Manual
The CIA Style Manual and Writers Guide for Intelligence Publications wants you to know:
+ ” ‘Data,’ ‘media,’ ‘criteria,’ ‘phenomena’ are plural and require plural verbs. . . . One never satisfies a criteria or observes a phenomena.”
+ “ ‘All right.’ Never ‘alright.’ ”
+ “ ‘’Different from’ is correct; ‘different than’  is not.”
+ “ ‘Ironically’ involves a sharp contrast between the apparent and the expected. Do not use ironically when referring to a trivial oddity.”
+ “ ‘Hanged’ is the past tense of hang when referring to an execution; ‘hung’ is the proper past tense in all other meanings.”
And keep in mind:
Homeland Security will know if you break these rules.

WRITE TO QT:  qt@zaysmith.com

From Poor QT’s Almanack

Battle of Cerignola, Italy, 1503
On this day in history 512 years ago, the Spanish defeated the French at the
Battle of Cerignola, which seemed important at the time.

Everyone needs a hobby

Poison Dart Frog
News Item:
Scientists have discovered a new species of poison dart frog in the Donoso district of Panama. The tiny orange-colored frog, which is as small as a fingernail. . . .”
This follows recent discoveries of tulips with digestive systems, cannibal lemurs, worms with no mouths, fish with penises in their heads, snakes with tentacles and meat-eating sponges.
. . . . as the Intelligent Designer walks slowly away, whistling to himself.

Sympathy and trust abounding. . . .

Terrorists

News Headline: “House panel approves massive Pentagon spending bill.”
News Headline: “Terrorists team up in Syria to build next generation of bombs.”
No one said the dawning of the Age of Aquarius didn’t need a little tweaking.