From an early age, English proved to be a difficult subject. Spelling, sentence structure, and crazy rules all messed with my young mind. Of course, many of my classmates had vastly superior skills and when this particular breed grew up, they turned into snobby Grammar critics. “Who should be used in the subject position in a sentence, while who should be used in the object position.” What a useless rule! Why is English so complex? Why don’t we write the way we speak?
My path toward improved English should have taken a graceful course into a sea of misspelled words and incomplete sentences. Instead, I decided to become an author. Words now dominate my thoughts, and I endlessly toil over choosing the best ones. Side note. My four blog followers would likely point out the vast need for improvement.
As my English improved, I began noticing a change in my perception. To my great surprise, sentences in other works had problems. For example, the book Reamde by Neal Stephenson had many issues per page. He is a bestselling author and surly uses a top-notch editor. Right? Apparently not.
Recently, a new trend emerged in my life. Other people’s flaws became so obvious that I felt the compulsive need to complain and correct them. Just this morning, I noticed the advertising slogan on a medical diagnostic company van “Because doctors care.” While this sentence is mostly correct, it made me want to yell, “Who the heck asked this question? Doctors are supposed to care. It’s their job. You guys are not even doctors!” Two years ago, I would not have given that van a second glance.
I recently read this Slashdot article sentence, “Cost-conscious farmers are looking for bargains, and tractors from that era are well-built and totally functional, and aren't as complicated or expensive to repair as more recent models that run on sophisticated software.” Do their tractors fuel up with run-on sentences? Don’t the Slashdot editors look at the headlines? Is there someplace to complain? Should I write a nasty comment?
Wait a minute. Who just wrote that? This is Bill here. The undisputed king of run-on sentences, awful grammar and misspelling. Did I somehow become that grammar hater? Have I switched sides? Is this going to be my new thing? “Stay tuned for epic bad grammar rants.”
By now, my four blog readers have a good grasp of my personality. Long-winded rants into esoteric topics do not lead to “buy it now” clicks. Will I suffer in silence? Perhaps a future blog will have my top ten bad grammar finds. Will my sentences make the cut? They will probably be the first nine.
PS, March 4 is National Grammar Day.
You’re the best -Bill
March 11, 2020
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