Alas, poor Borders

rogersgeorge on July 22nd, 2011

This just in, from Associated Press, no less. Shame on them! The guilty passage is in an article about the closing of the Borders bookstore chain.

Justin Grant, 31, from Brooklyn, however, was less phased. Although he had just picked up a parenting book to read on his commute home Monday, he said he buys most of the 25 to 30 books he reads a year onĀ Amazon.

Phased!?! They want fazed! “Phase” has to do with things like sine waves and light waves, and how the peaks and valleys of the waves match. “Faze” means to be stunned, disconcerted. Someone who doesn’t care what others think is not likely to be fazed by their insults. Perhaps, because both homonyms are real words, (ahem) someone relied too heavily on their spell checker. I’d rather have that, bad as it is, than have a professional writer and editor not know the difference between phase and faze.

Now to give good old Associated Press credit where credit is due, in the caption to one of their photographs to accompany the article, they did get something right. I quote their caption with the photo:

This May 1, 2011 photo shows Borders headquarters in Ann Arbor, Mich. The Ann Arbor, Mich.-based chain, which helped pioneer the big-box bookseller concept, is seeking court approval to liquidate after it failed to receive any bids that would keep it in business. The move adds Borders to the list of retailers that have failed to adapt to changing consumers' shopping habits and survive the economic downturn, including Circuit City Stores Inc., Blockbuster and Linens 'N Things. Photo: AP / AP
This May 1, 2011 photo shows Borders headquarters in Ann 
Arbor, Mich. The Ann Arbor, Mich.-based chain, which helped 
pioneer the big-box bookseller concept, is seeking court 
approval to liquidate after it failed to receive any bids 
that would keep it in business. The move adds Borders to 
the list of retailers that have failed to adapt to changing 
consumers' shopping habits and survive the economic downturn, 
including Circuit City Stores Inc., Blockbuster, and 
Linens 'N Things. Photo: AP / AP

Note their apostrophe in “consumers’. ” (The bold is mine.) Plural possesive, which a lot of folks are afraid to get right. They got it right.

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