More Pedantics

25 September 2009 at 16:37 (Random Randomness)

The book I am reading at the moment is called Eats, Shoots and Leaves. It’s been around some years, but I never got round to checking it out until we got a copy in at the charity shop where I work.

I embraced it like a long-lost friend.

Or perhaps even a long-lost lover, that’s how much I like it.

Yes, I do get really annoyed when shops advertise that they are selling ‘CD’s, Book’s and Video’s’! Freaking hell! Who are CD, Book and Video and what of theirs are you selling?

One more step on the road to ulcerdom.

It’s not just bad punctuation that gets me going: bad grammar does it too. Whenever I read the words ‘try and’ I feel my blood start to boil and I simply must, absolutely ALWAYS, mentally change them to ‘try to’. ‘Try and’ means you are trying to do one thing AND doing another thing. ‘Try to’ means you are trying to do such and such a thing. You never say, ‘I am trying and do my homework’, do you? Nor do you say, ‘I tried and do my homework’. Saying ‘I tried and did my homework’ says that you tried and then succeeded. Two distinct things. See? ‘Try’ goes with ‘to’.

I tried to do my homework. I am trying to do my homework. I shall try to do my homework.

It’s not that hard.

It also annoys me when people confuse ‘shall’ and ‘will’ when using the future tense. ‘Shall’ is used with the first person, i.e. ‘I’ and ‘we’. ‘Will’ is used for the others. Only when emphasising or expressing determination are these reversed, and ‘will’ is used for the first person, ‘shall’ for the others.

Yes, I mentally change them too, when reading, although I haven’t got so far as mentally correcting speech.

I’m sure I’ll get there one day, along with carrying a stick with a cut-out apostrophe taped to the top, and blank labels to cover up any apostrophes that shouldn’t be there.

By the way, kids, it’s ‘grammar’, not ‘grammer’.

Now where did I put my meds?


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