This week we look at more cases of misplaced identity – where writers simply get confused about which word they need in a particular situation. Wherever there are words containing two vowels next to each other, confusion and grammar mistakes are sure to follow! The best way to learn which vowel combinations are needed when in English grammar is to learn the phonetic sounds made by certain combinations. For example: the vowel sound ‘ai’ makes an ‘aiy’ sound in the English language, as in words like ‘aim’, ‘bait’, ‘raid’. The major exception to this rule is when the ‘ai’ is followed by the letter ‘r’, which changes the vowel sound to a longer ‘ayr’ as in ‘stair’ or ‘flair’. So this sign painter could have sounded out the word ‘riding’ and realised that it does not have any of the right sounds for a word containing the vowel combination ‘ai’. Literally is one of the words that causes the most trouble of all in English grammar, particularly recently as it has been adopted as a sort of slang term for confirmation or emphasis. The word ‘literal’ is an adjective meaning to take words in their basic sense without metaphor, or corresponding exactly to the original words. So this enterprising bank might not realise that what they are actually offering people are appointments to be held on the roof of their building! It doesn’t have much bearing on English grammar itself, but we couldn’t resist including this last example as a perfect illustration of a common writing mistake that all editors and proofreaders should look out for!
This hapless sign is a perfect example of a time when someone does just get completely the wrong word altogether, not because of any particular grammar or spelling mistake, but because they have simply misunderstood the meaning or spelling of a word they have heard!


It is always worth being on the lookout for slips like these as a proofreader, as they can actually be quite difficult to spot. Contact us with a description of the clipart you are searching for and we'll help you find it. There are a considerable number of communication skills lessons, theory and demonstrations that have been put up on the web. In order make these exercises more simplified and transparent, they have been classified into verbal and written. Verbal communication is an important aspect of day-to-day communication with our fellow human beings.
Good diction is about the art of speaking clearly so that you are understood to the exercises for a flat belly.
This had been an old process subverted nowadays by people who want to speed up action or with other one-sided agenda. Active listening is simply that – listening to the other party, getting the most information needed while suspending judgment. This arises for a variety of reasons, from confusion over spelling to a failure to understand the proper meaning of a particular word. As you can see from this VERY confused sign for horse riding, many people struggle to remember which vowels should be used together, where and when! So when people use the word for emphasis, they are often grammatically completely incorrect.


Since the word itself is not necessarily misspelt, but simply misplaced, it will often not show up on a standard computer spellcheck. However, it is equally important to implement some communication improvements on ourselves. The communication skill drills aim at overall development of speech, writing and presenting content.
Good diction is more about the tone of voice, the distinctiveness of speech and the pronunciation as opposed to choice of words or sentences.
This exercise involves active cues from your end – eye contact, verbal prods, nods and other non-verbal body signals. Whatever the reason for their mistakes though, you can rest assured you won’t be making the same ones any time soon! In fact in this case, the irony is that there are no double vowels in the correct spelling of these words at all!
Improving and polishing such communication skills is no crash course, but is lifelong process and this improvement and development process continues to go on and on. Apart from that, start solving small grammar and composition exercises, once or twice a week.



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