I have always hankered for a job where I can sell my words. I think I’m pretty good with words when I want to be. I surround myself with exquisite, delicate, evocative and earthy words on a daily basis.
So, when I buy a birthday card, a card for which someone has been paid for the quality of their words, it pains me to see this.
Edit I can accept the sequence of fragments as a stylistic pastiche. But the circled comma splices annoys me, especially the second one. They detract from the changes in tone; they lose rhythm and pace; they are just wrong.
But it is got worse! Turning to the inside of the card, I saw this!
A sentence begun with a lower case letter? A grocer’s apostrophe! From a professional writer! Which was paid for!
I hang my head in shame.
Word order is still capable of removing any ambiguity.
Fantastic video from Weird Al Yankovic featuring his word crimes.
Click here to view!
The excessive length of this rather cumbersome sentence from Miss Peregrine’s Home For Peculiar Children by Ransom Riggs, which begins 5 lines before the section photographed, is awkward…
But am I having a brain freeze moment here?
My brain balks at the clumsiness of the whom in the following sentence.
I kind of know it is right and can probably conjure up an explanation which is likely to use phrases like
it is an objective relative pronoun introducing a relative clause in which Ricky is the object of the verb phrase “surprised to see” which would naturally attract the personal pronoun him if re-written as “I was surprised to see him lingering near the punch bowl”.
But it still feels awkward.
As I say, possibly a minor inherent awkwardness exacerbated by an excessively long sentence.
Editors, where was your red pencil?
My favourite language joke of all time goes as follows:
Three intransitive verbs walked into a bar. They sat. They drank. They left.
If you ever want a tumbleweed moment, deliver that to a classroom of teenagers!
However, here are a few more, shamelessly stolen from around the interweb… Thank you Grammarly, in particular.
Have a wonderful 2015!
Just thought I’d run my other review blog through a word cloud generator and ended up with this …