Is this strip joint code language?

Misused apostrophes involving plurals, contractions, and possessives are commonplace and annoying, to be sure, and yet it’s usually not hard to understand how the confusion arises. The author’s intent in this case utterly baffles me. This is a hand-painted advertisement on the side of a building in El Paso, Texas, and the apostrophe is carefully painted with the same red with yellow highlights as the rest of the letters. Is “doo’r” a familiar term for those of you who frequent this sort of establishment? My wife says that it’s obviously a contraction for “do ‘er”, and she may be right. Given the context, though, I’m not sure about that. I’m also not an expert in this sort of thing. Best regards to all you other language purists out there…

apostrophe 004.jpg (267 KB)

Facebook Comments

3 thoughts on “Is this strip joint code language?

  1. I’ll have a stab.

    A lot of people seem to use apostrophes as some sort of pronunciation guide, to indicate a slight pause in the pronunciation of a word – ‘do…..or’.
    (Was this sign in a southern state?)

    Another example – many use an apostrophe for plurals of nouns ending a vowel, e.g. “two coffee’s”, where the apostrophe tells the reader that the word is to be pronounced “coffee…z”, and not “coffeess”.

    I pointed this misuse out to an employee once – she just shrugged, said ‘that’s your opinion’, and changed nothing.

    Just guessing (and in no way condoning the misuse) – maybe some apostrophe dunce could confirm?

    Anyway, the apostrophe’s clearly on the way out. When lawyers, teachers, ad copy writers and signwriters mainly can’t use it properly, it’s time to give up.

    After all, it seldom clarifies meaning; correct usage these days has snob value only.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *