“Hey, even the great Samuel Clemens wasn’t an error free writer.”

You’re Busted!

I’ve been busted by the grammar police a time or two. It generally happens on Facebook or while arguing with someone on a political forum. English was my major in college, yet that doesn’t mean I’m Mr. Perfect where not making typos is concerned. Hey, even the great Samuel Clemens (Mark Twain) wasn’t a word-perfect writer. A good many of my blunders unlike Mark Twain’s correlate to spellcheck software. I need a scapegoat and this is as good as it gets.

For the most part, Microsoft Word spellcheck is the police vehicle flipping on red lights. A friend calls it Microslop Word because their software isn’t totally mistake proof. I’ve found this to be true many times.

The other day I was writing something and was stopped short of finishing a sentence. I’d wrote that my hand held a bottle, and Microsoft automatically ran words together making things say, handheld a bottle. Each time I corrected this mistake the red error sign popped up. Other such incidents have occurred.

The word laundromat kept transferring to Laundromat. I don’t care what Google says, that’s not correct unless of course laundromat has a business name in front, like Havasu Laundromat.

Checking things out, Westinghouse obtained a trademark on Laundromat in 1930. Their trademark expired in 1957 and Westinghouse didn’t renew. Why some believe they still have to capitalize this word I’ll never understand. A laundromat to my friends is simply a place to wash clothes. If some English experts want to capitalize Laundromat, they might as well do the same for Washeteria.

Years ago, I was taught to add an apostrophe after a number merely as a separation point, not to show possessive. In the 1980’s, a group of English nerds evidently got together and declared this a problem. The apostrophe was dropped making 1980’s incorrect and 1980s the preferred choice. Being a Rebel in my own mind, I’ll continue writing 1980’s as a way of getting back at them, whoever they are.

Recently, I came across a clever poem written by author, Jerrold H. Zar. It deals with spellcheck problems.

“Ode to the Spell Checker”

Eye halve a spelling checker.
It came with my pea sea.
It plainly marks four my revue miss steaks eye kin knot sea.
Eye strike a quay and type a word and weight for it to say,
Weather eye yam wrong oar write.
It shows me strait a weigh as soon as a mist ache is maid.
It nose bee fore two long and eye can put the error rite.
Its rare lea ever wrong.
Eye have run this poem threw it,
I am shore your pleased to no.
Its letter perfect awl the way.
My checker told me sew.

Eye do my best to compose accurate sentences free of mistakes. The way eye see things, if you can reed what eye just rote, eye’ve been successful. What more can a guess rider ask for!

Samuel Clemens

Author: michaeldexterhankins

ordinary average guy

One thought on “GRAMMAR POLICE”

  1. Two things…no three:

    Why are you arguing on a political forum? Raises your blood pressure.

    “My hand held a bottle”…just as you would expect. Not your mouth. Not your foot. Or another body part holding your bottle. Grammar check should have got you on this one.

    Funny poem.

    In the end I disagreed with you about the apostrophe and year but agreed on capitalization. I’m not an English major and don’t remember all the rules but it drives me crazy when I see people posting on FB (or anywhere) with no punctuation and random capitalization.

    Our condo owners received a letter a few months ago regarding a new management company. It was one of the worst written things I have ever seen. Some of us couldn’t figure out if it came from our HOA Board or the attorney since both were listed on the letter. I couldn’t imagine an attorney’s office allowing that letter to go out.

    Based on my four weeks on the board (long story) I have determined it was written by the board president. She is employed by UAA as an IT supervisor. Sad sad sad.

    Sent via the Samsung Galaxy A51 5G, an AT&T 5G smartphone


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