Apostrophe errors drive me crazy. So I was shocked on a recent visit to London's Park Lane Hotel when I noticed the sign above. How did this posh hotel, I wondered, make such a big, honking grammatical error?
Then, later the same day, I saw another major apostrophe omission on a building: "Duke of Yorks Headquarters."
Was this a cultural difference -- like the way the British spell colour or recognise?
I asked a British friend. No luck. He uses apostrophes the same way I do.
Next, I Googled.
Along with discovering several British restaurants called Apostrophe, I found a Website for the UK-based Apostrophe Protection Society, evidence that some of our friends across the pond feel strongly about apostrophes. And I learned from a 2009 story that Birmingham, England's second largest city, had stopped using the apostrophe in city signs to avoid dealing with the things.
But I still don't have an answer about the signs I saw in London. Anyone have a clue about this? Anyone?