Friday, August 19, 2011

grammar, people!

"When you post/reblog pithy little graphics or other things that bemoan others not using English words or grammar correctly, it makes me lose a lot more respect for you than anyone else. It makes me want to unfollow you.
On the best days, that kind of language policing and shaming is a little brother to the tone argument in which you don’t care if someone has said something true or important because you’re just there to tear it down any way you can by disapproving of the words, letters, and structure used and the failure of them to meet arbitrary standards. "

i think this is so important to remember. There are so many reasons why folks write the way we do, don't write the way you do, make the choices we make, or don't make the choices you make. Please keep this in mind the next time you want to tell me to capitalize my sentences more often, or use more accurate punctuation, or mix up they're/their/there [which is sort of also amusing to me to be called on that when SO many people have a hard time respecting my pronoun choice (they/ them/ their) because it's apparently not "proper" (which is also untrue) bahaha].

Anyways, ponder away!

to add:

Here's a longer thought for folks to chew on at yer leisure...

These conversations of late (and ongoing really) about "The English Language" and who's doing it "right" and "wrong" are so interesting to me. To see what folks are ok with & not.

i want to share something with you about me because while it may not help you move past your dislike of and peevishness with these things, it may open it up to a little more understanding:
When im reading, either in my head or out loud, i have to for example turn this "the cat played with *an* apple" into "the cat played with *a* apple", because if i dont, i will see/hear/interpret it as "unapple". This becomes a real problem for me depending on the context; it totally changes the meaning, and limits my understanding of a larger piece of writing. Sometimes i end up writing it out as "a apple".

i dont change it in my mind or on paper or on the screen because i dont understand or respect the rules (but who honestly gives a fuck if i do or dont?), but because that is how my brain works. i have a learning disability brought on by having been bathed in alcohol during my time in the womb & having endured 2 intense brain injuries (& a few smaller ones) in my life. And this is how i have adapted to it.

As to the dislike of acronyms (LOL, WTF, TL;DR and so forth), many of us use those because the act of writing, the physical act, can be painful, and we use acronyms to last longer, to say what we need to say without having to endure more pain than necessary, especially in the online format.

Who is anyone, especially people with the privilege of being seen and respected as writers, and people who have worked so damn hard to have their voice heard in this written form, to suggest that what i and others have to say is somehow less worthy of or likely to get your attention because of these adaptations we have made? i mean really? If people's adaptations of a language which may not even be their first (and as the article i linked to illustrates quite well, folks who may have entirely conflicted relationship with it for many reasons) is such an impediment to respecting or paying any attention to what they're saying, i suggest the impediment is yours -- and i mean "yours" in the general, not specific to any one person or incident; but this stuff is not always simple rule-breaking to piss people off, and is not all "laziness". It has real consequences for people, in ways critics may not be / so often are not taking into account.

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