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Monday, May 9, 2011

Grammar does matter.

Disclosure:  I am a bit testy and don't feel very accommodating lately.  I do not profess to be a grammar expert, but some things are so basic, they should not be written incorrectly, IMHO.  

I was blog surfing and reading some recent posts at various sites and ran across a grating misuse of the French word, voila.  The blogger incorrectly spelled it as "walla" numerous times throughout her blog, which leads me to believe that she doesn't know that she is wrong.  I considered emailing her to let her know, but don't really know how to tell her the appropriate spelling without offending her.  To ensure that I am, in fact, correct, I located this definition:
"Walla is a word used by retarded Americans who don't know any foreign languages and barely know their own. The correct word they are looking for is "voila", which loosely translates as "here it is", "there you go", or similar meanings."  (UrbanDictionary.com).  This is a bit more caustic than I would prefer but does get the point across. 
I find that I am increasingly less tolerant as I age.  
My best friend recently posted on his FB page:
"Grammar is important. Capitalization is the difference between helping your Uncle Jack off a horse & helping your uncle jack off a horse."
I wholeheartedly agree with this.  I truly believe that, as a whole, we, especially our youth, are not taught to be mindful and careful in our grammar, or in other areas of importance.   In school, I lost points for errors such as run on sentences, misspelled words, incorrect punctuation, and the like.  These same errors have been ignored by more recent educators as my children have brought home papers from school with the grammatical errors completely ignored and graded an "A."  Then, my children are aggravated with me for showing them the correction and insisting that it does matter although it clearly doesn't matter to their respective teachers.  My daughter has actually been known to leave her work at school just so I did not have ready access to it for correction.  In their worlds, commonplace and incorrect gets them good grades so why should they strive for better since society clearly doesn't expect or demand it.  I have found this to be true in both the government schools as well as the private schools my kids have been enrolled in.  
 When did we get so complacent and non-caring?   Why do people not care about correctness anymore?  Why is it that I am considered to be anal-retentive and/or rude for applying proper grammar and correcting grammatical errors?  Have we really set your standards so low that we don't even notice?  I strive very hard to mean what I say and say what I mean.  We seem to have become a nation of sheeple that idly follow the path of least resistance without utilizing our innate gift of being unique and having opinions.  God, help us all! 

I do try to be accurate; if there is an error, please point it out to me so that I can correct it and avoid making the same mistake at a later time.  Please try to ignore my rant if you find it offensive.  This was intended to be a way of venting, not to insult or instigate.
 

5 comments:

Anonymous said...

Dear, you might consider using "voilĂ " instead - it's ever so much more sophisticated in the "Four Cheese Pizza" clique.

That said, experience draws me toward agreeing with "stupid people shouldn't breathe", for what that's worth.

Best,
-G

Melissa said...

-G, I would have chosen the correct spelling if I had been able to figure out how to type it that way:) I have some issues with the computer but would have handwritten it correctly. could you direct me toward the program that allows the inflection mark? Thanks for your input:)

quilthexle said...

I don't know whether this is a good sign or a bad one - but it's the same over here in Germany. And it makes me angry, too. (Of course, I'm talking about the use of the German language ...) So - I understand perfectly well why you needed to vent about this! (and, by the way, I'm pretty sure I make a lot of mistakes with my English - I'm more than happy when someone tells me about them, because it's the only way to improve!)

Jen said...

One of my pet peeves is misspelled words. If I am the least bit unsure of a spelling I will look it up so as not to look ridiculous on my blog!

Stray Stitches said...

I have to agree with you - especially about misspelled words. I read the same blog and had the same reaction as you.