Grammar Vigilante


Okay, so I *do* tend to write as I speak, which is informally.  And I do sometimes break the rules.  Ninety-nine percent of the time that's intentional.  If, however, you ever see something I've written and question its grammatical correctness, PLEASE tell me!  It does sometimes happen that I discover some idiomatic phrase that I've always used and never realized was actually wrong.  For example, I heard AOL announce 'You've got mail!' for years before it dawned on me that I was assaulting my eardrums with wrongness!  I also split my infinitives fairly regularly, and only correct them if I'm writing a formal paper or letter.  Once in a while I'll even end a sentence with a preposition.  (Gasp!)  Yeah.  That's how I roll.

The difference between most of my so-called errors and those that I will list here is this:  I KNOW the rules;  therefore, I am ALLOWED to break them.  Yep, that's how it works.  You see, I LOVE grammar!  I know that might sound weird, but it's true.  It's sort of like a puzzle to me.  Sometimes my brain will get wrapped around a particularly thorny grammar problem and I can't stop thinking about it until I've figured it out.  Like this:  'I appreciate your having taken the time to read my disclaimer.'  That there's one grammatically tricky sentence!  It includes the perfect progressive verb tense as a gerund!   (That's right;  many will try, but most will fail.  Hehe.)  When I began contemplating the sentence I had a hunch that the pronoun, and beginning of the phrase, should be 'your', a possessive pronoun, making the rest of the phrase a noun--a gerund, to be more specific.  A few other people thought it should read 'I appreciate you having taken the time', 'I appreciate you taking the time' or even 'I appreciate you're taking the time'.  I thought about it for a couple of days until I figured it out for sure, and only then did I do some research to confirm my hunch.  Why did I waste so many precious hours of my life contemplating something that would bore most people?  Because I LOVE grammar!

That is why I am adding this feature to my blog.  Grammar may not interest most folks, but I love it, and I want to share the fun with YOU!  You're welcome.  Heh.

Many of the examples I will be poking fun at (<--look at that!  I ended a phrase with a preposition!) are actually examples of bad usage as opposed to bad grammar.  The writer may have used a word completely incorrectly or simply chose the wrong spelling or used inappropriate punctuation.  Even though these technically aren't always grammar mistakes, I will include them here for the sake of ease. 

Again, I invite you to correct me!  I may defend my usage, but if you can catch me violating the rules of my favorite game I will love you for it.  And I'll tell ya so.  ;)

Grammatically yours, you'res and you ares,
The Grammar Vigilante

1 comment:

Siskeaux~ said...

There, there - they're there!
(Not to fret, the people or things you seek are where they are supposed to be.)

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