Still alive, still here; no religion, no flag, no fear. Slip into fifth gear and move, those who would disapprove can suck my dick, say sorry? Like fuck am I, those who wish to see me dead can die, the self righteous, step up and I might just see you saved, remember my face when you go to the grave. Fuck you, every last one of you, from the top down to the bottom, and that includes you, pig.
As a sometimes teacher of composition at the college level, I'd agree with about everything said previously in this thread and would like to add a couple more irritants. For me, the affect/effect confusion drives me absolutely buggy, especially when I see students writing about cause and affect. My other major pet peeve is the looks of incredulity I get when I tell my students that the spell check on Word is not omniscient and will not correct all of your errors which means that you have to actually, cue horrified gasping and moans of dismay, proofread.
Some of the spelling errors that would have been caught via proofreading have not only reduced me to tears from laughter but have also been profoundly embarrassing to the student. As an example, one of my former students was giving a speech about President Clinton and Monica Lewinsky. One of his slides was meant to be entitled "Bill Clinton's Public Relations Problems". Unfortunately, he omitted an L which gave an entirely new meaning to the slide and reduced the class to tears and pretty much ended his informative speech before it got started.
Vocatus atque non vocatus, Deus aderit. -- Erasmus
Originally posted by ShotGunShepYou are all wrong!
It is by far the use of "they" as a 3rd person singular pronoun.
Nearly everyone makes this mistake and it is a very hard habit to break.
I can't tell what you mean - give an example, please.
I believe Shep is referring to this sort of construct: "I don't remember who the poster was, but they expressed their total disdain for Brock Lesnar in their post."
That's a problematic construct though. I think of that usage as grammar evolution in progress. We certainly all know that the classical grammatical rule is to use "he" & "his" when the gender of the pronoun's reference is unknown. However, that rule has become outdated & socially inappropriate. So the sentence ends up being something like: "I don't remember who the poster was, but he or she expressed his or her total disdain for Brock Lesnar in the poster's post." (Note that we (!) can't continue to use a pronoun in that third location, since Brock would be the "he" at that point.)
Or, the sentence gets totally garbled around into some intricate passive voice monstrosity in an attempt to avoid the problematic pronouns completely: "I don't remember who the poster was, but an expression of total disdain for Brock Lesnar was contained in a post by someone."
So, I maintain that "they" in this context is not being used as the plural third person pronoun, but rather in its newly proposed role as the non-gender-specific singular third person pronoun.
Which brings me to my Worst Abuse vote: unnecessary passive voice. :-) This is rampant in technical writing, & especially when the writer is trying to sound authoritative. (Which is not to say that the construction of such sentences might be outside the reach of this author in occasions of deliberate obfuscatory intent.)
Originally posted by emma So, I maintain that "they" in this context is not being used as the plural third person pronoun, but rather in its newly proposed role as the non-gender-specific singular third person pronoun.
A lot of grammarians have come around to this compromise, but by no means all of them. Personally, I wish we could just stick to the masculine for all unspecified third-person singulars, but I'm a guy. I can understand how women would be bothered by it, but I'm disppointed at how the outrage over unnecessarily distorting the English language comes nowhere close to equalling the outrage over the use of a masculine word.
Which brings me to my Worst Abuse vote: unnecessary passive voice. :-) This is rampant in technical writing, & especially when the writer is trying to sound authoritative.
I wrote a whole column about passive voice in wrestling commentary, but it's even worse in sports commentary, especially football. It's twice as bad when combined with the "we cannot make a possessive by adding an apostrophe anymore" phenomenon. "The ball was thrown and was caught by Marvin Harrison, and now the Colts find themselves on the twenty-yard line of the New England Patriots."
I had to jump out of my usually lurking mode to chime in on this thread!
Although it's not the worst abuse of English I've seen, I absolutely loathe seeing the misspelling of "definitely." It's not spelled, nor ever will be spelled "DEFINATELY!" I swear that gets under my skin!
(And by the way, this is the type of thread that makes me very self-conscious about my own use of proper grammar and spelling! )
If your nose is full of boogers it's snot my fault!
I had someone at work suggest to me "bi-weekly meetings" for something. It irks me that I have to then determine if the person* meant to suggest one meeting every two weeks, or two meetings every one week. The online M-W dictionary (m-w.com) lists both as definitions, so one can never know for sure.
Originally posted by RYDER FAKINThe overuse of the word “fuck”
Telling me the time of day should not take, at the most, more than 1 f-bomb..."It’s fucking four-fucking thirty, motherfucker". No need at all for that. Especially from the females
Ahem. You know what I'm going to say here, right? ;-)
Originally posted by Matt TrackerThe complete ignorance of the definition "literally."
I just had a phone call from a lifelong friend. We went to the same elementary & high schools, had comparable college educations, & are from pretty equivalent social & familial backgrounds. When (the fuck, for Ryder Fakin) did she start using the word "literally" literally every fifth word!?! Somehow that Saturday Night Live sketch (Wasn't it?) must have implanted itself in her brain so insidiously that the sarcasm of it was lost! (See, TV is evil. That proves it.)
Alyson Hannigan will forever be on top of my list as long as she's on TV. Emily Procter I've got to agree with. I've loved her since The West Wing. I'll add in Marcia Cross and Eva Longoria to my list, from Desperate Housewives.