Thursday, April 29, 2010

Meat is done. You are finished.

Remember when I shared my list of things that bug me? Well, I forgot to mention a BIG one: bad grammar.

I followed an intriguing link from one blog to another this week, and was pleasantly surprised to  discover that the link I followed was to the blog of an author that I like and respect. However, he lost me when I noticed two HUGE grammatical errors in the second sentence of the first paragraph. I'm certain the author had a valid point he wanted to communicate, but I was too busy trying to fix his errors in my head that I couldn't even finish his post.

I also take a little too much snarky pleasure in reading the flyers/info letters that come home in my kids' backpacks each week. I secretly want to circle every typo and grammatical faux pas with a fat, red pen and send it back to the school office. Anonymously, of course. Last week, I read a couple of things out loud to John (Mr. Editor) and we were both dumbfounded at the misuse. It scares me a little (frankly, a lot) because some of the people who write those letters are the ones teaching my children!!! I'm sure if I offered to write all the correspondence that goes home from school, someone would take me up on it, but then what would we do for evening entertainment? Arrogant, much?

I think some of my grammar geekiness came from my mother. Here are some things that were drilled into my head growing up. 

Me: Can I walk down to Robin's house?
Mom: I don't know. Can you?
Me: (rolling eyes) May I walk down to Robin's house?
Mom: Yes, you may walk down to Robin's house. 

Me: Me and Robin want to make some cookies.
Mom: Who?
Me: Me and Robin.
Mom: Who?
Me: ME AND ROBIN!!!!!!!
Mom: Who?
Me: (rolling my eyes) Robin and I.
Mom: Robin and I what?
Me: Robin and I would like to make some cookies.
Mom: Sure, just make enough to share. 

Me: I'm done with my homework.
Mom: No, you're not done. Meat is "done". You are finished.

Mom, you'll be happy to know that Sarah has two teachers who are sticklers about not being "done" but "finished", and about "may" instead of "can", and that I also correct my children when they say these things. 

Don't even get me started on typos! Check out the typo I found on the Pei Wei take-out menu. Seriously, Pei Wei??? Don't you think spell check would have caught that???

Disclaimer: I use incorrect grammar sometimes and I rarely use spell check before publishing posts on my blog. 


JenB said...

Ok, now I'm going to be all paranoid when I leave a comment here. haha! Well, that's all I have to say---I'm done! ;)

Lauren said...

I'm with Jen, I'm going to watch what I say in my comments now, haha!!!! :)

This shall be English 101 with Mere!!! LOL!

mer@lifeat7000feet said...

SO not my intent you guys...

Carpool Queen said...

Did you know that chickens have necks and women have throats?

You're welcome.

Carpool Queen said...


Yer welkuhm.


Your welcome.

Gina said...

I am SO in love with you right now.
I also reply, "I don't know, can you? Are you physically able?" when my children ask if they can do something.
I am a stickler for there, they're, their, well and good, and bad and badly.
And I edit everything I read.

Deidre said...

I love the disclaimer. While I make many mistakes on my blog, one of my pet peeves is correct grammar. My biggest one is the misuse of 'I' and 'ME'. I would say the majority get it WRONG thinking 'I' is always correct. That aggravates me.

Laura V. said...

I completely agree and I share the need to edit and return to sender anonymously! It REALLY bothers me in spoken grammar the most. Do people really not understand what they're saying, or do they just not care enough to correct themselves?

"I don't feel good."
"I seen it the other day."

I hear those two errors constantly and I just want to correct them, even when it's a stranger.

I'm just as guilty as the next person about not spell checking or proof reading, but I WILL correct myself (and my children) if it's spoken aloud.

Also, someone needs to post a general lesson on all Facebook pages regarding the use of your and you're; and there, their and they're in comments.

Moriah @ Please Pass the Salt said...

You know what else bugs me? When people are TRYING to be proper and say "I" when the correct word is actually "me." (As in "he's coming with Andy and I" when it should be "Drew's coming with Andy and me.") HA.

Also, have you heard of Spunk & Bite? It's a modern update of Strunk & White. John would probably get a kick out of it.

2cats said...

Whenever I received a note from one of my son's teachers that contained misused words I did do the editing and had it returned to the offending teacher. I was not a parent to make friends with the teachers and if they could not spell or write correctly I thought it only fair that they should be made aware of it. I try hard to be grammatically correct, but I have a hard time with punctuation. If someone could give me pointers I would greatly appreciate it.

Unknown said...

LOVED the disclaimer...mostly because I was cringing at all the typos you probably read on my blog!

I often don't catch them until WAY after I've posted...and I am too lazy to go back and correct them!

OhioFamOf4 said...

I have a thing for grammar as well. I can remember as a kid when friends would pass me notes I would correct them with an ink pen as I read them.

Some other things that bug me are the misuse of their/there/they're, your/you're, people who put an "e" in truly so it looks like truely and the word irregardless.

We'll be in even worse shape soon with all the shortand that goes on in the texting world. I really believe that technology is the dumbing down of society. My husband swears by his GPS, but I fear there will come a day when no one knows how to read a map because they'll never have had to learn.

O Mom said...

I hate typos amd grammar mistakes too, especially when I do them!!!

dawn said...

OK, I never learned the done...finished stuff. I blame all of my grammar issues on being from New York...

Holly said...

My scoring job was assigned yesterday--the A.C.T.! As I went through the training sessions today, I found a grammatical error and spelling erro--on the English portion of the ACT. I toyed with emailing them, but decided better--for they will be writing my paycheck. :)

Good to see you every day at school--it lights up my dull days, friend.

Holly said...

See? Humility happens when I criticize. *error* :)

Stephanie said...

I can relate, my mom always corrected our grammer and I edit everything I read automatically.
The joke is on me though because my children are an English teacher's nightmare. Growing up bilingual with everyone around us speaking English 2nd language my kids constantly make grammer mistakes. I still correct them but I think it's a lost cause!

Stephanie said...

lol, Grammar!!
When I saw it published I edited myself. Haha, too late!

*carrie* said...

This made me smile. I'm a constant proof-reader myself.

The funny thing is I was planning to write a post on this soon, and was considering it for 10/10!

Anonymous said...

Actually, I'm fairly certain that "I feel good" is not incorrect. In this sentence "feel" is a linking verb not a sensing verb and we use adjectives after linking verbs. Unless, of course, when you say "I feel good" you are making a comment on your ability to feel things using your sense of touch. That would make "feel" an action verb and the adverb "well" would be preferable. Donald Trump corrected Cyndi Lauper for saying "feel bad" on Celebrity Apprentice. Donald was wrong. He should be fired. Or fried if you're dyslexic.

Have you ever read _Eats Shoots and Leaves_? It's one of my favorite books. I think you would like it.

I get aggravated with myself when I make grammatical or spelling errors. But I love reading fun grammar blogs and books. I always learn something and hopefully I can remember it and use it when I write/talk.

Stephanie Kay said...

I also have the can/may thing in my head. But done/finished is a new one for me. I might have to adopt it.

Gretchen said...

Oh deer. I wonder if I've made any tiping mistakes on my blog, lately.

I like the idea of your sending in the "corrected" flyers (or is it fliers? Now, I'm nurvis.). :) You could call it your pubic service to humanety.

Melissa said...

I agree! The they're/their/there thing drives me nuts! I've never heard of the done/finished thing though!

Kecia said...

I know exactly what you mean! My dad was an editor...I grew up editing TV commercials, etc. It's a hard habit to break!

Anonymous said...

I understand the point everyone is making but this just makes me want to be quiet, not try to blog, or put myself out there. I might be found lacking. It is hard to share yourself when you feel like you are going to be criticized, corrected or judged as being deficient.

Cathy said...

Hahahahaha!!! Gretchen said "pubic"!!! (Yes, I are 8.);)

I'm so glad you still want to read my blog and be my friend after all the errors of mine I'm sure you've caught.:)

One thing that does get me is when people incorrectly use "your" and "you're". Worse than that...when I review one of my own blog posts and I'VE done it.