a journey ends, identity theft, and grammar

the journey ends

The rest of the current chapter is posted. You can read it from the beginning, or you can pick it up here, at the first subway station.

it still sucks

Identity theft #2 (#1 was mentioned here) just happened. It consisted of somebody getting my debit card information and making a series of small ($12-$13) purchases with it. In Paris. That made it both easy to contest (since it is not difficult to prove that I’m not in Paris), and annoying (since my money is off having fun in Paris without me).

It was also amusing that it started by someone calling me and asking for my debit card information (and then being pissy because I wouldn’t give it to her). Even before I was the victim of identity theft #1 I wouldn’t have been that stupid. It turned out they were from the bank, but I wasn’t going to tell them anything until that was confirmed.

And you can get rid of a debit card and get a good, old-fashioned ATM card if you want, but you have to ask for it. Which I did.

grammar drones

I saw this post on stormville’s blog. It took a few minutes to track down the origin of the question, but finally this clarified why “pilotless drone” was suddenly such a big deal (and also, amusingly, how it might be partially or entirely a fake).

In the absence of context, I can’t give an opinion on the use of the apparently redundant modifier. Of course, I immediately checked the Chicago Manual of Style, and couldn’t find anything relevant, but I’m fairly sure their answer (if anybody would send in the question, and how much do you want to be that at least one person does?) would involve an assessment of the point the author was trying to make, and a caution against any grammatical rules which say either “always” or “never.”

I would also be very suspicious of any issues raised by somebody who would say, “Aren’t you there to ensure that the English language isn’t pissed on by your subeditors?” Though I originally read that as “pissed off,” which would be funnier (in an “It’s not nice to fool Mother Nature” way).

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