Grammar Police: not addressed to anyone in particularThen, I chimed in with...
I'll probably get drowned for this, but I can't help it. It's been bugging me the last couple days. Its vs. it's: Its is possessive. It's is a contraction. Look! There's a dragon under the tree! Its scales are purple. It's going to eat some ball point pens. - IntrovertGirl
Grammar police, Part IIThere was some back and forth...
I might as well pile on, too, IntrovertGirl, and keep you company in the water...
They're = they are
Their = possessive
There = not here
You're = you are
Your = possessive
Yore = not now, but before (that one is just for fun & symmetry)
Can't help it... they just jump out at me. ;~) Really. You can blame my (late) grandmother. - Karen M
@ Karen MWe learned we had supporters...
Oh, no, don't get me started. I'll happily hijack any thread to babble about grammar and language. I like "yore." We could start on ... nauseous v. nauseated disinterested v. uninterested which v. that socialism v. communism conservative v. liberal ... or, maybe not! - IntrovertGirl
Introvert Girl & Karen M - grammar police right on.And other commenters began to offer us sites for jumping off purposes:
"disinterested v. uninterested" is one of my pet peeves. Rampant use of "dis" for "un" is only getting rampant-ier as days go by. Current obsessions also include "different FROM" vs. "other THAN". ps - regards to sysprog on the auto-antonyms earlier, another one is "cleave" - certifiedprepwn3d
http://www.wsu.edu/~brians/errors/affect.html - Paul Dirks
My starting point for grammar discussions is language log dot com, which has covered many of the points you talked about upthread. - Fraud Guy
@ Karen M "I object when nouns become verbs merely to serve jargon"And a little later, in response to criticism that anyone could/would want to wallow in grammar, IntrovertGirl offered some personal, deep-seated reasons that could only inspire a blog like this one:
Oh, c'mon, Karen, surrender to the pleasures of anthimeria! What's wrong with verbing a few nouns? Or anthimeriazing them…or…something…
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anthimeria http://blogs.msdn.com/ericlippert/archive/2004/10/01/236740.aspx - Jeff W
@Djinn, genie-ghost of 7th-grade Mrs. Sullivan ;)Finally, certifiedprepwn3d validated my original point about words used merely as jargon...
This is absolutely my last word on the subject, promise.
My 7th-grade English teacher? She was a nice lady, but I don't think she knew that much about grammar. No, I wrote the original post in my professional capacity. I get paid to be nitpicky about grammar and language. And it's a job I couldn't do if I didn't absolutely love it.
That's the definition of a grammar geek. We love language. You don't read books like "The Deluxe Transitive Vampire" for kicks if you don't love grammar. And it's my endless enjoyment of the art that makes me push for precision. Half the reason I read this forum is because I enjoy the many ways the participants argue their points eloquently and often poetically.
As for English being a living language, that's absolutely true. My favorite poet is Gerard Manley Hopkins, a nonsensical user of words if there ever was one. What I object to is muddiness and ugliness. When someone says, "I feel nauseous" when they mean "I feel nauseated," it expasperates not because it's incorrect, but because we're losing one perfectly good word and forcing another to perform two functions. As for the -izing, I just find most of them aesthetically unpleasing. There's objectivity for you!
jeff w and karen mAnd now we have a blog... if we can keep it (w/ apologies to B. Franklin).
Karen - I see what you are saying -- I play with language the way my little niece plays with her cheerios (not exactly the way, sure), and feel joy in understanding how not following "the rules" adds meaning rather than taking it away. Holograph - i.e., multi-layered information, is the goal.
The bland, intentional spin, wonk-speak (including "we are tasked with") filters information out of the statement. It is like those drugs that mimic other substances and block receptors in your body -- so many speakers from power want to make noise that has the same effect as communication (the listeners shutting up and behaving) without actually communicating anything. [And, they certainly don't accept any attempts to communicate back at them, particularly not truth to power.] Their use of language is not fun. It does not add to the shared human knowledge and experience of the world. - certifiedprepwn3d