Grammar Pet Peeve

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JerryF
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Grammar Pet Peeve

Post by JerryF »

Why is it that hardly anyone speaks "about" things anymore? I frequently hear (and see) speaks "to".

Example: "I can't speak to that recommendation."

The sentence should be "I can't speak about that recommendation."

The structure using the word to sounds as if you're unwilling to speak to a recommendation---literally.

:evil:
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Re: Grammar Pet Peeve

Post by Pjotr »

Things that are logically wrong in any language:

1. "Like me" instead of "like I". It should be: "someone like I (am)". The "am" can be omitted, but "I" is the subject, not the object.

2. Double negatives intended to mean a single negative: "I never have no money" means I always have money, not that I never have (any) money.

This second error is very frequent in the Dutch dialect (Brabants) that's being spoken where I live: "nooit geen", and the very worst of them all (which is so badly wrong that it becomes sort of cute): "dè witte oit noit nie". :twisted:
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Re: Grammar Pet Peeve

Post by Lady Fitzgerald »

JerryF wrote:
Sat Aug 29, 2020 2:55 pm
Why is it that hardly anyone speaks "about" things anymore? I frequently hear (and see) speaks "to".

Example: "I can't speak to that recommendation."

The sentence should be "I can't speak about that recommendation."

The structure using the word to sounds as if you're unwilling to speak to a recommendation---literally.

:evil:
I could write a book about improper grammar but people would then be crawling out from under the woodwork to argue about it (much like I'm going to do with the next post in this thread :wink: ).
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Re: Grammar Pet Peeve

Post by ajgringo619 »

Pjotr wrote:
Sat Aug 29, 2020 3:11 pm
Things that are logically wrong in any language:

2. Double negatives intended to mean a single negative: "I never have no money" means I always have money, not that I never have (any) money.
Double negatives are actually used quite frequently in Spanish, at least in the Mexican version I frequently hear.
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Re: Grammar Pet Peeve

Post by Flemur »

Pjotr wrote:
Sat Aug 29, 2020 3:11 pm
Things that are logically wrong in any language:
1. "Like me" instead of "like I". It should be: "someone like I (am)". The "am" can be omitted, but "I" is the subject, not the object.
Like me or like I am are correct; like I is not.
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Re: Grammar Pet Peeve

Post by JerryF »

ajgringo619 wrote:
Sat Aug 29, 2020 3:31 pm
Pjotr wrote:
Sat Aug 29, 2020 3:11 pm
Things that are logically wrong in any language:

2. Double negatives intended to mean a single negative: "I never have no money" means I always have money, not that I never have (any) money.
Double negatives are actually used quite frequently in Spanish, at least in the Mexican version I frequently hear.
I agree with you Pjotr. Double negatives are logically wrong. But...

It is grammatically correct to use double negatives in Portuguese also.

I never have any money = Eu nunca tenho nenhum dinheiro

nunca and nenhum are the two negatives.
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Re: Grammar Pet Peeve

Post by Lady Fitzgerald »

Pjotr wrote:
Sat Aug 29, 2020 3:11 pm
Things that are logically wrong in any language:

1. "Like me" instead of "like I". It should be: "someone like I (am)". The "am" can be omitted, but "I" is the subject, not the object.

2. Double negatives intended to mean a single negative: "I never have no money" means I always have money, not that I never have (any) money.

This second error is very frequent in the Dutch dialect (Brabants) that's being spoken where I live: "nooit geen", and the very worst of them all (which is so badly wrong that it becomes sort of cute): "dè witte oit noit nie". :twisted:
I fully agree with point number 2 but point number 1 opens up a rather large can of worms, at least in American English (the differences between American and British English is an even bigger can of worms). A lot depends on whether one considers "I" to be the subject or not and the context it appears in. In a sentence like what I believe you are referring to--such as, "Mary is looking for someone like me."--would be correct since Mary is the subject. To say "like I" would not only be wrong, it would sound pretentious (if you said that here in the SSA, people would look at you as though you were nuts or a snob). If you say "Mary is looking for someone like I am.", then that would be correct. Both versions technically mean the same thing but the first example narrows down who she is looking for to be as the person is overall but the second example suggest Mary is looking for a specific attribute I possess only she fails to say what it is.

I'm sure people will be chiming in with different opinions which will be good since this can be viewed many ways, some which would definitely be correct, some would definitely be wrong, and others could be both. English is a very imprecise language due it being composed of words that were purloined from multiple other languages which were then frequently mangled by its speakers, often to the point of being unrecognizable or even complete changing their meanings.

I cannot comment on your Dutch phrase because I do not speak Dutch (I would say your English is better than my Dutch but I would be greatly selling you short).
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Re: Grammar Pet Peeve

Post by Pjotr »

There are many linguistical errors that have been elevated to the status of approved rule.... In most languages I know.

For example, in Dutch there are certain words that have acquired a wrong double plural:

1 ei (egg), 2 eieren. Originally, in (pre)medieval times, the plural was "2 eier", like it still is in German. But most plurals in Dutch end with "-en", so people started to add that to "eier", and it became the rule.

Same with 1 kind (child), 2 kinderen. It once was "2 kinder", like it still is in German.

Interestingly, this double plural also appears to be present in English, which is after all a Germanic language as well: 1 child, 2 children. It probably was "2 childr" or "2 childer" once.
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Re: Grammar Pet Peeve

Post by Portreve »

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Re: Grammar Pet Peeve

Post by RollyShed »

How often do you hear "amount of people" instead of "number of people"? Maybe it is kg of people?

How often recently "social distancing" when it should be "physical distancing"?
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Re: Grammar Pet Peeve

Post by AndyMH »

The bible (or at least it was when I was a lad):
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/A_Diction ... lish_Usage
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Re: Grammar Pet Peeve

Post by Lady Fitzgerald »

RollyShed wrote:
Sat Aug 29, 2020 5:42 pm
How often do you hear "amount of people" instead of "number of people"? Maybe it is kg of people?

How often recently "social distancing" when it should be "physical distancing"?
One of the definitions of amount is number. so both amount and number can be correct.

I agree about "social distancing". Physical distancing makes far more sense but if you were to use that term with most people, they may not understand what you are referring to. However, it is referring to a concept that affects society so mayhap that is the reason it was adopted.
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Re: Grammar Pet Peeve

Post by Moem »

Pjotr wrote:
Sat Aug 29, 2020 3:11 pm
Double negatives intended to mean a single negative: "I never have no money" means I always have money, not that I never have (any) money.

This second error is very frequent in the Dutch dialect (Brabants) that's being spoken where I live
Double negatives have a very long history in Dutch. In the middle ages, they were completely normal. We'd say ‘Ic niet en can’ just like the French still say 'Je ne peux pas'. Our 'en' used to be pretty much exactly like the French 'ne'. It could also be used by itself: 'Ic en doe' (ik doe het niet), I'm not doing it.
Afrikaans still uses the double negative: Hy is nie hier nie (He's not here).
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Re: Grammar Pet Peeve

Post by Portreve »

Over and above any problems I have with people's poor grammar itself, I have an even bigger problem with the common tendency for people to not seem to have any desire to improve themselves. They're literally surrounded by people in society who could be and should be an example of what they could do with their own life, and they just can't be bothered. I guess it explains some of the other choices they make in life, and for example why they watch reality TV or other garbage.
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Re: Grammar Pet Peeve

Post by Lady Fitzgerald »

Portreve wrote:
Sat Aug 29, 2020 9:56 pm
Over and above any problems I have with people's poor grammar itself, I have an even bigger problem with the common tendency for people to not seem to have any desire to improve themselves. They're literally surrounded by people in society who could be and should be an example of what they could do with their own life, and they just can't be bothered. I guess it explains some of the other choices they make in life, and for example why they watch reality TV or other garbage.
I agree that the willfully ignorant are anathema! There is no shame in being ignorant as long as there is a willingness to learn. There is no excuse for willful ignorance. I much prefer to deal with someone who is ignorant but is receptive to learn than someone more educated but unwilling to learn for the former will someday surpass the latter.
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Re: Grammar Pet Peeve

Post by AZgl1500 »

I too, am bothered by people using incorrect grammar and spelling....

Social apps like Facebook have murdered the languages so badly, that it makes me sick to see it.

tmw for tomorrow, cul for see you later, and more of the same ilk.

Here in my little town of Oologah, Oklahoma, USA in our Community Group for our town, I see high school graduates spewing out pure junk in lieu of proper language etiquette.

I tried to find the picture of a Grocery List that I saw a couple of days ago.

it went like this

Groshury lish
1. brade
2. paynuit buitter

and worse.
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Re: Grammar Pet Peeve

Post by absque fenestris »

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As the viruses are, they sometimes freak out ...
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Re: Grammar Pet Peeve

Post by GS3 »

One thing I see a lot lately and had not noticed years ago is not writing final "d" in words like

He was suppose to pick it up
I see it a lot and I always feel like asking if it was just a typo, which I suppose is possible, or if they dropped it because in spoken speech they are not pronouncing that last letter, which seems more likely to me.

Note: This post is made with light heart and not suppose to cause any offense to bad spellers out there who may be easily triggered.
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Re: Grammar Pet Peeve

Post by dm999 »

A couple of pet peeves. I'm sure I'll think of more...

"Should of" instead of "should've" I see this most days... :oops:

"Alot" instead of "a lot" It's two words, not one.... :roll:
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Re: Grammar Pet Peeve

Post by kelevra »

GS3 wrote:
Sun Aug 30, 2020 3:02 am
One thing I see a lot lately and had not noticed years ago is not writing final "d" in words like

He was suppose to pick it up
I see it a lot and I always feel like asking if it was just a typo, which I suppose is possible, or if they dropped it because in spoken speech they are not pronouncing that last letter, which seems more likely to me.

Note: This post is made with light heart and not suppose to cause any offense to bad spellers out there who may be easily triggered.
I think a lot of errors like that are a person's reliance on a spellchecker and not proofreading the final product. I catch little things like that all the time.
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