ALTOGETHER or ALL TOGETHER? There is a difference.

Yesterday's The Birmingham News carried Christie Dedman's "Birmingham Bargain Mom" column, as it does every Sunday.  I like her tips for saving on purchases of meat and produce as prices continue to rise. 

However, I had two Glitch problems with this week's column.  Here is the first:

     If purchasing organic produce is getting too costly, don't skip purchasing fruit and veggies    all   together.

I agree with The Chicago Manual of Style on this one. (Check the "Links" at the right side of my home page for this manual.) It points out that ALL TOGETHER (written as two separate words) means "unity of time or place" as in something like–We were ALL TOGETHER at John's house when he got the phone call OR, Those records are ALL TOGETHER in the bottom file drawer.

The word needed in Dedman's column is ALTOGETHER (written as one word with only one L).  It means "wholly" or "entirely," as in something like–The rumor going around the neighborhood is ALTOGETHER false. OR, I have stopped listening to political talk shows ALTOGETHER.

Dedman's sentence does not refer to the organic fruit and veggies being ALL TOGETHER in the produce department.  It refers to skipping the purchase of them entirely.  The sentence should read this way:

If organic produce is getting too costly, don't skip purchasing fruit and veggies    al  together.

 PleasePleaseNotice that I omitted the word PURCHASING from the introductory clause of this sentence.  It is not necessary and does not contribute to the meaning.

I should mention that Dedman suggests buying non-organic produce and taking time to clean it thoroughly.  She notes that the Federal Drug Administration (I believe she means the Food and Drug Administration.) has guidelines for doing this properly.  You will find those guidelines at

Stay tuned.  Tomorrow I'll post the second Glitch problem with this column.

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