Steering into confusion

I used to work with reporters who would write that something was “thisclose” to happening, and then howl that their creativity was being stifled if anyone suggested inserting a space between “this” and “close.”

Yes, it just looked like a typo.

The spelling in this ad, I’m afraid, is no typo.

Rather, it’s a morsel from the gruel school of usage. …

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A barrel of what?

We don’t hear much about “barrows” in the 21st century, which is no doubt why the folks having this garage sale listed a “wheel barrel” for sale.

There’s definitely a difference, though, between a wheelbarrow, which is a type of hand truck, and “wheel barrel,” which is a, a … garbage can?

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