Please report any errors. Once reported, they
will promptly be listed in the "Exceptions to Common Grammar, Usage,
and Spelling Rules" section of Ralph's Manual of
Although Ralph's Manual of Style is already up and running,
Ralph himself is still under construction. We apologize for any inconvenience.
Don't try this at the office.
Numbers: Words or Numerals
Write out all numbers
between one and sixty-seven point three two, with THIRTY-FOUR
through FORTY-SIX set in small caps. For numbers above sixty-seven
point three two, numerals should be used, preferably Arabic, though
Lydian numerals look stylish with certain oldstyle typefaces. (Call
your Adobe dealer today to order your copy of Garamond with Lydian
Usage: compare to
Use compare to when likening something to a summerís day and
compare with for all other uses.
A: Hey, Fred!
Compare thy new
Buick to a summerís day!
B: Gee, Ralph, itís a good thing
you didnít say
or you would have really been
Who/Whom: The Etymology
As for the origin of the who-whom distinction in
English, scholars believe that its roots are in the ancient
proto-Indo-European tongue, which one night was burned by a
hot chicken leg at a barbecue and, injured, started getting in
the speaker's way, forcing her to close her lips some of the
time when she made the ooo sound, thus creating the
word whom from who.
definitive guide to usage, grammar, and turnips.
With Ralph's Usage Guide, you'll be able to write paragraphs like
the one below.
Sitting across the room, it looked to he and me like it was
going to be a long, problem, distasteful evening.
More importantly, I was bound to compare
what I was seeing to real life in order to
quickly find the differences, due to the fact that my mind is more unique than other people's.
Hopefully, I had reckoned wrong about all this, but, the fact was,
was that I likely had not. The fact that I thought so was
live like kings (and
queens), while copy editors are left to cross their t's.
is clarity: Copy
editors are, by virtue of their
trade, too well understood.
THIS IS THE MANUAL THAT
THINK! If people easily understand what you are paid to
produce, then they are going to wonder why it is that they
to produce it.
If, on the
they can't grasp
a single word that comes
out of your mouth (see doctors, lawyers, and, yes,
accountants), then they
will think you have some special, elite knowledge
home in Beverly
Hills and, of
archive our trade knowledge
hold just as many important- and foreign-sounding words as those
texts of other professions (words like pluper-
and Starbucks) . . . these very volumes ensure the general public
will be able to
end product with little more effort
than they spend watching TV.
WHERE RALPH'S MANUAL OF STYLE COMES
to confuse even
those with multiple PhDs. Once the pub-
lishing world turns to RMS,
people will have to hire a copy editor just to inter-
pret their TV
away all the
other books that
litter your shelves
and follow Ralph's exclusively, and in no time at all, you will be
able to afford a BMW, a Beverly Hills home, and possibly even
of a doctor,