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September 17, 2009

If you hear a tiny *pop*

...it is the sound of my mind being blown.


Yesterday, I talked about this whole period-space-space thing.

So today, I'm going to take on a few grammar rules. I am breaking Sister Mary Margaret's ruler right over my Strunk and White. Oh yes I am!

(That sounds kind of....naughty! heh heh)

Ok, confession time: I didn't go to Catholic school. APS was a-ok.

Apparently middle school is much on my mind this week. Likely reflective of my mental age right now...but I digress.

Today we speak of Mr. Parker. Oh yes, another educator that saw my brother and sister pass through the doors of his classroom before I came along, all impressionable and scared.

Mr. Parker was, to put it mildly, a grammar Nazi.

(Yes, that's putting it mildly! And no I am *not* prone to hyperbole! Quit taunting me!)

Mr. Parker was all about forcing us to diagram sentences at the chalkboard.

(For the younger readers, yes, we used actual chalk in those days. And we had to walk uphill both ways to get to school.)

Mr. Parker would rattle off a sentence, and then we had to diagram the damn thing.

If you got stuck, he'd make sarcastic comments. Occasionally singing a little ditty meant to embarrass you. And then he'd tell you how you blew it. Because we always blew it when it came to diagramming sentences.


So Mr. Parker's waltzing, melodic teasing is in the back of my mind as I read this article:

Three grammar rules that are okay to break.

Doh! That's wickedly delicious, like getting caught smoking out behind the portable buildings!

(Not that I did, I was am a painfully rules compliant girl)

Here we go:

1. Feel free to boldly split infinitives.

They quote the famous Gene Rodenberry line, "To boldy go where no man has gone before" as evidence that this is ok.

Hmm. Not sure "Star Trek" is the high water mark for grammatical correctness. Then again, maybe I could get into this.

Problem is, it's also been drilled into me that adverbs should be kept to a minimum, under which "boldly" would qualify.

So...to capriciously break the rules, seems...well, I just did it, that's not so bad.

Oh yeah, I'm turning to the dark side!

(Mixing metaphors too! Oh, I'm naughty!)

2. Ending a sentence with a preposition is nothing to worry about.

Ok, I admit it, I already do this. And I hear Mr. Parker in my head when I do, but damnit, I do it anyway.

But I'm not going to stop!

At least until I get in trouble and then I'll be very compliant and mild.

3. Is it even okay to use sentence fragments? Yes.

Yeah, ok, fine. I do this. A lot. With frequency. And I'm not going to quit!

If loving sentence fragments is wrong, I don't want to be right!

I often get that green squiggly underline in Word that says "sentence fragment, consider revising." To which I reply, boldly: "NO!"

Then click ignore. It feels so good to click ignore.

You wanna know what else?

I also dangle my participles. I do and I'm not sorry.

Oh I'm grammatically running amok now!


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Creative Commons License
All content of Oh Fair New Mexico by Karen Fayeth is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.