03/19/2014 04:49 pm ET Updated May 19, 2014

Are You Guilty of Using These Malapropisms?

In their spoken and written expressions, many people use, misuse, and abuse words in the most extraordinary ways.

To set things straight -- and with a nod to Mrs. Malaprop (go on, Google it) -- I offer the following glossary, with which all writers, editors, and other communicators should become familiar.

Linguistic: A type of pasta. I'll have the linguistic with white clam sauce, please.

Grammar: Grampa's wife.

Quotation: A minimum for a given period. I need five more to make my quotation for the month.

Verbiage: Foliage that's still green.

Semicolon: What's left after surgery on the lower gastrointestinal tract.

Comma: What you're in if the above surgery doesn't go so good.

Period: Past tense of look. He period through the window.

Nominative: A candidate for political office.

Genetive: The first book of the Bible.

Predicate: Expecting a baby. My cousin Gladys is six months predicate.

Adverb: Very bad. She shot a 3 under par despite adverb weather conditions.

Conjunction: Pink-eye.

Communicator: Someone who gives you conjunction.

Pronoun: A noun that gets paid.

Phrase: A stage of life. He's just going through that awkward phrase.

Compendium: The 47th element on the Periodic Table.

Past perfect: Threw for a touchdown.

Dangling participle: Please, this is a family website.

Subjunctive: Tinged by personal opinion. Don't evaluate this project so subjunctively.

Preposition: A romantic suggestion. Felicia was appalled by Horatio's lewd preposition.

Apostrophe: A disaster.

Mnemonic: Something that helps you remember Satan's name at a networking event.

Subordinate clause: An elf.

Asterisk: In peril (of): Asterisk of sounding like a know-it-all, let me explain the Pythagorean theorem.

Parenthesis: A hare-brained notion your mom or dad came up with.

Hyphens: A Russian-born violinist.

Imperative: A drink before dinner.

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