Tuesday, November 28, 2006

With apologies to Mrs. Hoff, the English teacher who hated me for no reason

I make absolutely no claim to be any sort of Grammar Police (see: random capitalization, irregular use of punctuation, fragmented sentences, etc). With that safely out of the way, I will say that one of my many bad points is my strong distaste for careless, sloppy speech, especially in a business or formal setting.

For example: "Also, too" and the proliferation of "business catch-phrases" such as "expedite immediately", "synergy", "phenomenal" (when over or mis-used). Bastardized abbreviations such as "lo-carb" (carb.0.hydrate. know it, learn it, love it) "lo-cal", "nite", and so forth make me grit my teeth. Ninety-nine times out of one hundred, I don't speak up when I hear the english tounge being butchered, because it is generally regarded as rude to inform someone they are mangling the langauge of Shakespeare, Browning, Melville, Thoreau. I generally appreciate a bit of gentle correction, but that's just me.

Tonight, I sat in a cold hall, tried my best to concentrate, made a few Monty Python references to my husband, and in the end, couldn't take it any more. The last straw was a badly misused word (levity in place of gravity), and I made sure to take a minute to gently bring it up while making a self-deprecating remark about my failed career as an English teacher. The entire exchange took less than a minute, yet gave me pause. Why do we get so embarassed when people try and gently help us out? How many times have you seen someone's tag hanging out of their shirt, but not murmured some little hint to them, because you're afraid of their response? Undoubtedly, they didn't wish to walk around all day with their clothes in dissaray, you wouldn't bellow the fact out to the general public...what is the problem? Worse yet, how many times have I thanked someone for telling me about my unzipped fly, turned around and rolled my eyes because I was furiously embarassed? The shame, she runs deep.

So...what are your pet peeves?

Mine are:
-The Never-Ending Blinker (cough, old people, cough)
-Driving while on cell phone.
-Tag out.
-Undie string (nicknamed "teabag" by a friend of ours) hanging out.
-Black bra, white shirt (WHY? HAVE YOU NOT HEARD OF A NUDE BRA?)
-"Also, too"
-Telling me I look tired. (BECAUSE I AM TIRED, I DON'T WANT TO TALK ABOUT IT.)
-Excessive use of all-caps, aka "yelling", lists as posts.


Heather said...

I will admit I'm careless in the writing department. When I started my blog...my DAD of all people looking out for me, emailed me a few times commenting on my poor editing skills. I rolled my eyes and changed the problems and thought to myself...hey this is my way to let go without worrying about writing perfect. But then I thought about how uneducated people seem when they have numerous errors. I catch them, and I’m not perfect. What are people thinking about me when they read my stuff?? I’m more careful now but still don’t pay attention to what forms of words (there, their) I’m using and still make mistakes. I can see my DAD cringing every time he reads my blog.

Found you from NoBloBoPo…happy bloggin!

Bryndar the Banarian said...

I'm not the best with grammar and punctuation, but there are certain things that even I cringe at: The incorrect usage of their, there, they're, and too, to. But my pet peeves that aren't grammar related are: people who click the cross walk beeper repeatedly, and groups of people who take up the entire sidewalk and walk really slooooowww. I know I have a lot more pet peeves, but I can't think of any more glaring annoyances at the moment.