M. Alex Johnson – Journalist at Large

An analog journalist in a digital world

Posts Tagged ‘grammar

Grammar Day: ‘I would advise that you comply with our language laws’

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It’s National Grammar Day. It’s also the 19th anniversary of the death of the great comedian John Candy. To celebrate, here’s a clip from “Canadian Bacon” that brings them together.

Written by Alex

March 4, 2013 at 11:37 am

Grammar Day: ‘Correct’ and ‘proper’ aren’t the same thing

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In honor of National Grammar Day, I’m republishing this post from 2011:

National Grammar Day (as proclaimed by the Society for the Promotion of Good Grammar) started in March 2008, almost exactly two years after Jack Dorsey sent the first tweet on Twitter.

Putting those events in the same sentence isn’t a non sequitur. Grammar isn’t a simple system, but it’s easy to reduce beliefs about “correct” grammar to simple cris de coeur that fit snugly in Twitter’s 140-character limit. The #language hashtag is an active one, and much of the traffic blares its horns at a misspelling or a grammatical offense that has slipped through to publication. I’ve certainly sped along in its fast lane — #language is littered with my own objections and funny-to-me observations.

Debates over grammar are like debates over the existence of God or what region is home to the best barbecue*. We all have firmly held beliefs, and what makes the debates so fun is that all of us are right and all of us are wrong.

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Written by Alex

March 4, 2011 at 5:02 pm