I got a question from the Peanut Gallery today, and that always makes my day.
Issa in Houston asks:
“Is there any prefix that might be hyphenated in verbs?
I see this one when I fuel up my vehicle:
‘Replace nozzle when finished.’
I definitely can’t replace it!
They don’t have spare ones there! Can I re-place it?”
Well, Issa, re– is a joined prefix that only requires a hyphen if the first letter of the next part of the word is an E.
The word “replace” can mean “substitute another just like it” = install a replacement, but it also means “put it back in its original place or position.”
So, if you don’t have a replacement for the fuel nozzle, it must mean that you should put the original one back in its original place, not leave it lying on the ground.
Upon hearing this, Issa replied:
“I’ll never ask the attendant for a replacement nozzle again!”
Profound Quote of the Day:
“Computers are magnificent tools for the realization of our dreams, but no machine can replace the human spark of spirit, compassion, love, and understanding.”
– Louis Gerstner, former IBM CEO, b 1942