Thursday, July 15, 2010

Ain't ain't in the dictionary--A FUN POST!: A relative and a friend of mine, too, told me perhaps I should "lighten up." My relative also wrote about poor grammar and syntax in our nation. So I added this to her blog. It's the best I can do at humor in these often serious times.

I am a stickler for proper syntax, grammar and speech. The mode of expression I think I loath more than any other is the so called “Valley Girl” speak. The word “like” is thrown into a sentence more than salt and pepper are thrown into spaghetti sauce. “Like it was totally this or that.” “I said to her like blah blah blah blah.” It’s HORRIBLE! What is that a substitute for? Perhaps like is used instead of a pause or “Uh or UM” I’d rather one be silent than use the word “like.” That being said, English is a difficult language. To me, it makes sense but to some it makes no sense. How often does one (yes “one” instead of “you”) hear “I coulda went” instead of “I could have gone” or “Him and me went to the store” instead of He and I went to the store OR me and Lassie went to the vet. Proper grammar always puts the other person first and the sentence writer or speaker second so it SHOULD be Lassie and I went to the vet. There is, too, little knowledge of cases i.e. the difference between the subjective and objective case. I gave the gift to HIM and NOT to he. “Him” is the objective case and pronouns usually take the objective case. “I” is always the subjective case. “I go to the store” Mari and I went out to eat. ME is the objective case often the object of a preposition. He gave the present to ME.

The grammatical, syntactic and punctuation fracturers of the English language in writing or speech, to me, are like fingernails on a black board. It is blatant, annoying and says something about the speaker or the writer. I pick up on it instantly. How have our schools erred SO badly (not bad but badly as it answers the adverbial question how)? When using verbs of feeling such as I feel bad about something, the correct word is “bad.” If one says I feel badly then it means that their sense of touch is out of whack!

Axed is OUTRAGEOUS to say instead of asked. When someone says that I want to take out an ax and say SEE THIS IS WHAT AN AX IS. You can cut down a tree with it. It is NOT the verb to ASK!

If I were interviewing someone for a job how WELL (not good) they speak in addition to the content of what they say would be the two most important yardsticks I would use when deciding to hire them. Perhaps, I might even say that the correct grammatical phraseology they use would be the first thing I notice.

Interview someone on the street and ask them to say something in multiple sentences. I am often AMAZED at what grammatically poor English they use and how little people know. It, I think, tells one something about the nature of our culture and it AIN’T — oops — it ISN’T good!

Oh yes, and they stopped the leak .... for now! :)