Wednesday, October 25, 2006

Fixing the Gate

We've had another spate of "-gate" incidents recently. Well, two (does two qualify as a spate?): Foleygate and Pine tar-gate (or Smudgegate or Pinetargate). What to do with these "-gate"s?

Well, other than avoid them because they're ever-so-lame cliches, you have to look at the root word to discern how to append "-gate." If it's one word, like "Foley," you don't use a hyphen: "Foleygate." But if it's two words (and Webster's has "pine tar," although I've seen it one word), I'd tell you to join the second word and "-gate" with a hyphen. The L.A. Weekly would tell you to use an en dash, which we'll get into another day.

And, finally, I'd just say that everyone should leave Kenny Rogers alone. So he had some pine tar in his glove. Big deal! Every pitcher in the Majors uses the gunk. Hell, I've heard Tony La Russa uses it to color his hair.

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