The Dreaded Apostrophe
People often become confused about the purpose of apostrophes and end up using them in all sorts of creative ways. Perhaps you've done so yourself. If so, take heart, because you're certainly not alone. You can walk into almost any store and see signs like the following that feature the incorrect use of the apostrophe:
In these examples, none of the words that has an apostrophe needs one. Each is a simple plural, and you almost never need to use an apostrophe to denote a plural. Using an apostrophe correctly doesn't have to be difficult.
There are three basic situations in which an apostrophe would be the correct choice:
forming a plural (rare)
Let's start with the easiest use of the apostrophe, the contraction.