Grammar Is Your Friend

We all have our pet peeves, don’t we? In an irritating society there are plenty of irritating habits that make your skin crawl and your patience disappear. People chewing with their mouth open, snorting, sniffing, coughing, talking… I can go on and on. It just depends upon your tolerance level. But there is something lately […]

Grammar Is Your Friend

We all have our pet peeves, don’t we?

In an irritating society there are plenty of irritating habits that make your skin crawl and your patience disappear. People chewing with their mouth open, snorting, sniffing, coughing, talking… I can go on and on. It just depends upon your tolerance level.

But there is something lately that grinds me even more than all those body noises.

Bad Grammar.

Perhaps it’s because I’m a writer/proofreader/editor it grinds me a bit more than you. But I can’t help but wonder what ever happened to teaching correct grammar — spelling and speaking.

With auto-correct and word anticipation on every computer on the planet, you would think the correct words would just appear. But even auto-correct can’t help with the wrong choice of words.Auto-correct can’t help those who guess at the wrong word or the wrong version of a word.

Grammar isn’t rocket science. It’s common sense. Something that many people lack.

It’s one thing if you type the wrong word. In my haste to get something written, at work and at home, I have picked the wrong form/spelling/tense. Almost always I catch my mistakes in proofreading. But I’ve come across some people — professional people — who consistently misspell, misrepresent, and actually mangle the English language. And often these are higher-ups — educated people with degrees — who should know better.

I know I sound like an old lady, but at least I am a grammatically correct old lady. They aren’t teaching cursive in schools these days, but speaking and writing well is as important as it’s ever been.I hear a lot of lazy English these days — hip language, slurred consonants, half-words. In some circles that may mean money — a recording career, stand up comedy. But outside of that rarefied atmosphere it won’t get you far. You need to know how to spell. You need to know your syntax.

Even if you don’t know what syntax means.

I know English is one of the most confusing languages around. I mean, how many ways can you spell Where? Wear? Ware? But in today’s world that’s not an excuse. When I see a professional letter start out “Goof Morning,” I have issues. It’s one thing to text “you are my breast friend” instead of “you are my best friend,” but not in an interoffice memo.

Not everybody is a writing scholar. I know I’m not. But I’ve practiced. I’ve learned. You owe it to yourself to take your time and reread what you write. Don’t count on spell check to catch your mistakes. Once you learn your weaknesses, make an avid attempt NOT TO DO IT AGAIN. Don’t let lazy English get in the way of your moving forward in your life.

After all, not everyone is Rocket Raccoon in Guardians of the Galaxy. Not everyone is cute and furry and can get away with saying, “Well he don’t know talkin’ good like me and you, so his vocabulistics is limited to ‘I’ and ‘am’ and ‘Groot,’ exclusively in that order.”

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