My life is to make everything around me beautiful.

Friday, June 18, 2010

A Visit to Ikea, A Little English Lesson and Hanging On to the Edge My Soap Box

While in Seattle recently to visit our new great granddaughter we went to Ikea in Renton, WA. If you've never been to an Ikea you are in for a treat because of the sheer vastness of it. They pretty much cover a city block. I saw much I would love to have but I either couldn't get it home in our car or I had no place to put it after I could get it here. I settled for 2 things. This little white enamel-type pitcher...

and this cutting board that hooks over the edge of the cabinet to hold it in place. Price for the cutting board was only $9.99! A steal for a very large cutting board.

Recently, I found this little book and purchased it. It contains the things we learned in school back in the 40s and 50s and it intrigued me because I'm sure I've forgotten a lot of things. In fact, I've forgotten more than most kids in schools today learn! Indulge me for a moment.

How many of us know the conjunctions or even what they are? Hmmmm?

The most common—no, let me say here it is ONE of the two most common errors in the English language—I hear on a daily basis: the misuse of pronouns. Him, her and me are used most commonly at the beginning of a sentence incorrectly (this sentence is acceptable for learning here of course!). Him and me are dating. Nuuuuuu, incorrect. Her and I are dating. Nuuuuu, incorrect again. It should always, ALWAYS be she, he, or I at the beginning of a sentence. (Can you tell my buttons are pushed with the way even our college graduates are coming out of universities with much lacking in their English skills?) What is wrong with correcting these individuals? It sets them straight in an embarrassing moment but will save them much more embarrassment when giving a talk or presentation for work. Imagine!

The second most common mistake is when someone says "between he and I". Nuuuuuu, noooooo, NOOOOO! It is proper to say between him/her and me. If you take out one of the pronouns here and just say it like this: There was a confrontation between he and I, then you will realize it is correct to say between him and me or between you and me. I'm even not punctuating properly in this post because most people wouldn't recognize proper punctuating. I bold more than I should because I want something to stand out here and most of the time it wouldn't be recognized if I just italicized it. I'm not kidding you when I say I hear university graduates speaking improperly! I'm not one bit afraid to correct them—privately, of course, so as not to embarrass them.

Get on your kids' English teachers to correct them. Don't settle for "but we don't want them to be afraid to express themselves". Baloney! Proper language and/or grammar is proper language and/or grammar and will determine what people think of them in the future. I don't mean their self-esteem; I mean how smart they are in their own language. Improper language makes them appear ill-schooled and ill-equipped in the marketplace.

There. I am now officially down off of my soap box...for a while.

And I think I just broke the record for longest title for a blog. *Sigh*...


  1. My parents were a whole generation ahead of my fellow peers, most of my friends assumed that the man dropping me at school was my Grandad, actually as I sat in the rear of the car and we had an old white Mercedes and Dad always wore a macintosh and his glasses they thought he was my driver! lol no wonder I had few friends!
    The written word, reading, grammer and pronunciation were the main reason to get a clip around the ear, Dad especially disliked bad grammer, and if I didn't know how to spell something he would say "how do you say it?" and then I would have to work it out for myself or look it up in a dictionary. Mum was 35 and Dad was 45 when I was born, lets just say I was not planned and that Christmas party never occured again! after 3 boys my Mum didn't even believe the midwife when she said "aaww its a girl" Mum replied "are you sure!"
    My 12 year has so far gone through school with written work not being corrected as far as spellings were concerned, which drove me insane. she would even get a mark for trying to use a big word, even though she had spelt it incorrectly. I don't see a problem with crossing a word through and writing it in red corectly spelt, I am sure when I went to school I would then have to write the word 10 times in the back of my book, however that could have been my Dad making me do that! lol

    I do not allow text language in the house either, and I hate receiving it. Over here they have started allowing the children at school to complete their exams in text langauge, can you believe it? their reasons are that the children can get the exams completed faster.

    Well I hope my grammer has not been too dire, and I will join you in your quest.

    big hugs

  2. What a wonderful book. All children should be given that in school.
    Did it say anything about the misuse of the word 'myself' I wonder? (He and myself were ......)
    Correct grammar is something that I feel very strongly about, but has largely been forgotten today.

  3. Connie, I LOVE this post. This is a soapbox issue for me too. I could easily be a member of the Grammar Police!!! It is especially appalling to me when I read online news articles from my local TV station or MSNBC. You would think the people that wrote them would have a journalism or English degree...but there are mis-spellings or wrong word choices or poorly constructed sentences.

    Sometimes you read "except" when they mean "accept" or "loose" when they mean "lose."

    Or how about when someone says something like, "I have went there." Noooo, it should be "I have gone there."

    So, my dear, I'm right there on the soapbox with you. (By the way, I'm a homeschool mom. Can you guess that grammar is right up there with history as my favorite subject to teach?!)

    Have a lovely day,

  4. What an interesting book. Don't you just love IKEA. We have one nearby and I love it.

  5. oooooh, I like the cutting board. What a good deal!

  6. Connie...that is MY ..IKEA....oh I have been there WAAAAY to many is exhausting but wonderful eye candy....and you can dress there stuff up..or keep it simple...I enjoy a little field trip to that place...
    soap boxes are good...don't you feel better fot it?

  7. LOL...I think we have discussed this before Connie and I couldn't agree more. I hear very educated people on television use bad grammar all the time. i before e except after c is one I will never forget and use it all the time too. Have a sweet weekend! xoxo

    P.S. allowing them to express themselves as an excuse not to correct them...hogwash

    P.S.S. Love the cutting board!

    P.S.S. Wonder how many people actually know what P.S. means?

  8. Hi Sweet Pea,

    The things that make me TOTALLY CRAZY is when people don't spell correctly!
    Andddddddd that him and I one ~ yikes...

    I felt like I was back in school and you had a ruler in your hand.

    Have a great weekend my friend.

    xo Cathy

  9. Yes, teacher..
    I still remember the i before e...
    I beleive I still remember that.
    Why do we have some of these rules. I'm a slider..remember!!
    My pet peeve is someone saying..
    "I could care less" instead of..
    "I could'nt care less."
    I'm being silly here, but I never took much to English class...
    Too busy drawing...

  10. One of my daughters is an English teacher and a stickler for correct grammar. The other daughter is a linguistics major who says that language is continually evolving. The combination makes for some interesting discussions.

    I'm a member of the Grammar police, myself. What drives me crazy is the incorrect use of apostrophes, and the use of "I" instead of "me."

    I have to take a ferry to get to an IKEA, but when I do go, there are plenty of wonderful things I'd love to bring home with me.

  11. Oh my sweetness your studio is breathtaking, I am going to have to go through it all again as I think I must have missed something in all of these delightful pinky goodies and oh my heavens the office chair is simply TDF, I can only imagine the delight you bestowed on the girl having the bad day. What a sweet heart you have! Thank you for stopping by , I love hearing from you!
    Squishy hugs,

  12. Oh my sweetness your studio is breathtaking, I am going to have to go through it all again as I think I must have missed something in all of these delightful pinky goodies and oh my heavens the office chair is simply TDF, I can only imagine the delight you bestowed on the girl having the bad day. What a sweet heart you have! Thank you for stopping by , I love hearing from you!
    Squishy hugs,

  13. The one thing that bugs me more than anything is "your" and "you're". When people mess that up...arrgggghhhh!! I have seen t-shirts printed incorrectly!!! I am an English snob too! hehehe!

  14. Love to meet other Great Grannies who are still enjoying the heck out of life, doing things they love and can get on their soap box without help!!! I'm becoming a follower.


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