Terrible typo: In my blog on July 3, I ended with the sentence The newspaper I freelance for now mandates that we use that in such instances. Sometimes they overuse that and underuse to, but that's their business. Someone asked about that; I should have said on. Like everyone else, I need an editor.
Changing words: You'll notice quickly that I'm a fan of the Miami Dolphins, and I found this sentence earlier today — While the Dolphins won nine of their last 10 games to reach the playoffs, the Jets floundered, missed the playoffs, and Mangini was fired. I think foundered works better than floundered, but that's just me.
The Merriam-Webster Dictionary online defines flounder as to struggle to move or obtain footing : thrash about wildly. Its definition for founder: to become disabled ; especially : to go lame.
When I was a kid, foundered was the correct word. People do use floundered more than foundered, and it bothers me. By using floundered instead of foundered, the people have changed the definition of the word.
A boat that's sinking doesn't flounder (thrash about wildly). It founders (becomes disabled). The Jets probably did some thrashing last year, but, in the end, they became ineffective (foundered).
More EDITOR@WORK blog entries
Entries from The Dog Blog
Blog entries from The Auto Racing Journal
(a book of great stories about the Intimidator)
(the book of great NASCAR stories)
More blog entries by Tom Gillispie
Anecdotes by Tom Gillispie