Saturday, October 9, 2010

Another grammar lesson from my boring life.

Who knew Pete could look so regal?

I've decided I live a boring life, but I kind of like it that way. I spent the majority of my day cleaning, ironing, and working. Somewhere in there I took Pete for a 2-mile walk, and then I cooked dinner. Thrilling, isn't it? But I had time to sit on the deck and drink my tea and enjoy the beautiful weather, and that's worth a lot to me. I heard from four of the five children, and had contact with the fifth (actually the first one) on facebook. It was a good day.
While I was cooking dinner, Ben was listening to some guy on the Internet blabbing about baseball, and I heard him use the phrase "centered around." Sadly, the use of that terminology is approaching epidemic proportions. I hear it all the time and it makes my skin crawl, so let's discuss it. 

If you hate conversations about grammar, run now.

Center (v) means "place in the center." Around (prep) means "around." I think we all get that. Now let's use it the way I keep hearing it and see how much sense it makes. 

The bulls-eye was centered around the target.

The vase was centered around the table.


What they mean is centered on.

His talk centered on baseball. (not centered around baseball)

The book was centered on great grilling. (not was centered around great grilling)

I understand that centered around is an idiom and therefore the rules of usage don't apply, but it still just doesn't sound right. It's centered on

Okay? Please pass this on to all sports announcers.

Be thankful ~


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