Life is crazy! Buying real estate is a long and complex process. But, more on that later. For now, I have a pet peeve that I must get off my chest. And, this post may offend some people who are guilty of this pet peeve. Let me apologize in advance. My intent is not to offend. But, really this is driving me crazy!
I have noticed lately, that the beloved apostrophe is being used all over the place incorrectly. And, I say that the apostrophe is beloved because people seem to be throwing it about willy nilly with no concern for its proper use, so it must be because they love the apostrophe so much. But, the apostrophe has a definite purpose. It can't be thrown around and put in wherever you want to see it. For my sanity (because I'm a grammar freak), let's have a little grammar lesson about the apostrophe.
All of sudden, people are using the apostrophe to pluralize nouns, usually proper nouns. This is not what the apostrophe is for. That's what an "s" is for. For example, we are The Frisbys. Not The Frisby's. My jaw practically hit the floor when I saw this improper use of the apostrophe in some of our real estate documents. The "seller's" (should be sellers, no apostrophe) were disclosing some information to us. When I see someone pluralize their last name to say who they are and they throw an apostrophe in there, it makes me want to rip my eyeballs out of my head. We are The Smiths, not Smith's. Bakers, not Baker's. Thomases, not Thomas's. Get it? Now, if you want to say that this is the Bakers' house, then you can put the apostrophe in because you're showing possession. And because the Bakers are plural, the apostrophe goes after the "s". Right? And just to back myself up, here's the official word from Grammarbook.com:
"Do not use an apostrophe for the plural of a name."
So, the moral of the story is that the apostrophe is used to show possession and for contractions. And maybe a few variations of those basic purposes. It is absolutely, positively NOT used to make something plural. Yay for grammar! Now please, use your apostrophes responsibly. My sanity will thank you.
*Since posting this, I realize that some people have last names that may be a little more difficult to pluralize. Here's a link that should clear it all up. If you have a last name that you're not sure about, check this out.