I have to admit that I would die a mini-death if PowerPoint were to be taken away from me. As a trainer, I have come to rely on PowerPoint as a convenient, portable, teaching aid. It also enables the sharing of other media like videos and even interactive games.

Maybe I exaggerate when I say that I consider PowerPoint an art form. I enjoy designing attractive and effective slides. Sadly, not every presenter puts the same effort.

This clip is one of my favorite YouTube videos. It is funny. And it resonates with me, reminding me of some really horrid PowerPoint viewing experiences. Enjoy it and learn from it.

If the video link does not work, copy and paste this URL:

You ask: Which is the correct answer for: Who wants to go? I OR ME?.

Grammar Pulis Answers: The correct answer is: I.

I won't go through the rules of subject and object nouns this time. Some people hear the word rule, and they run away.

The simple and quick way to know the right answer is to answer in a complete sentence.

I want to go.
Me want to go.

If there's anyone who thinks it's the latter, then you're on the right blog site. Welcome! I'm here to help you figure out this confusing world of grammar. Read on, learn, and enjoy. :)

So the correct pronoun is I. But you're going to sound strange saying, "I!" I is just not a loner word. It needs company.

If you want to be a stickler, then you may say the whole sentence:
I want to go.

Or more briefly:
I do.

But, here's my little secret. If speed is an issue, and you need to shout out your answer forcefully, for example somebody says, "Who wants to go to with George Clooney to an all-expense-paid trip to Maldives?" By all means, shout, "Me! Me! Me!" Flail your arms around and jump up and down so that you are noticed. Now is not the time to bother with grammar.

You ask: I know both forms are correct, but when is it proper to write the date this way: April 2, 2009 and this way: 2 April 2009?

Grammar Pulis Answers: Yes, both forms are correct. And the way you punctuate those dates is also correct. If you use the month-day-year format, you should insert a comma in between the day and the year. If you choose the day-month-year format, then omit the comma.

Both examples here are correct then:
April 2, 2009
2 April 2009

It's also good that you spelled out the month.

Can you imagine the confusion if the dates are written these ways?
or 4/2/2009

As to when you should use them, my default answer based on my stock knowledge would have been to:

  • use the month-day-year format, the traditionally considered US format, when you're corresponding with somebody from the USA, or a country that predominantly follows Standard American English, and
  • use the day-month-year format if you're corresponding with Europeans and countries that lean toward British English .
Wikipedia also makes this distinction.

However, I decided not to rely on stock knowledge and checked other sources. Several sources were silent on the matter, but the Chicago Manual of Style and Strunk and White's The Elements of Style agree that both formats are acceptable in the US. So, you can use either. Just try to be consistent if you're going to mention many dates in a document. Choose one style and stick to it.

It then becomes a matter of personal preference. Unless the organization, industry, or community you write for prescribes a specific style, you can chose the format that you're most comfortable with. Some organizations, for example, require dates to be formatted according to ISO standards.

Strunk and White prefers the day-month-year format, 22 April 2009. The word separating the figures contributes to clarity. Eliminating the comma also very subtly reduces clutter. I think those are 2 great reasons to choose 2 April 2009.

You Ask: Is it correct to say "Advanced Happy Birthday" or "Advance Happy Birthday"? Or should I just say Happy Birthday in Advance?"

Grammar Pulis Answers: Hmm, I am so used to saying Advance Happy Birthday, so I never really wondered about its grammatical soundness. Until now.

Let's analyze.

First, let's consider the meaning of both words, advance and advanced. Both can be used as adjectives. There are, however, slight differences in the usage. says that advance is an adjective that describes something that is given, made, or issued in advance. A couple of examples are: advance payment and advance copy.

Advanced, on the other hand, is an adjective for describing something that is further along in progress or something enlightened. For example, Advanced English Program, advanced theories.

Based on the definitions, it would seem then that the former is more appropriate than the latter.

BUT, this requires more analysis. The second thing we need to look at is what the word advance is modifying. If we say that it is modifying the word birthday, then that does not make sense because the birthday is not advanced. The one that is being given in advance is the greeting. That means then that both Advance Happy Birthday and Advanced Happy Birthday are grammatically wrong. So, you really are better off saying, Happy Birthday in advance. Or just say, Happy Birthday.

Personally, however, I wouldn't mind it so much if anybody says Advance/Advanced Happy Birthday to me. I mean what kind of rude, grammar-obsessed person would I be if I slapped a grammar violation fine on a person who is being nice to me?

As the Grammar Pulis, I would let something like this nonstandard usage slide, then I'll smile, and just take the gift that goes with the greeting.

Advance Happy Easter! Oops, that should be Happy Easter in advance.


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