It’s National Nerd Day!

March 5, 2010

Today is National Grammar Day! It’s a day for me to celebrate the fact that, as Neal pointed out, I’m a big dork.

And you know what? He’s right! On Wednesday I found out about the holiday (holiday!) on Twitter. Immediately I got excited. And then I saw a contest where you could submit a limerick about grammar and win a grammar book.

I then spent all day, every spare moment, trying to craft a winning limerick. If that doesn’t make me a dork, nothing does. And the sad part? It was fun – even when Sarah #1 judged me for writing a limerick expressing my fondness for the Oxford Comma.

Today? I had a lot of work to do. But in between all the work? I forced the intern, Jackie, to take grammar quizzes with me online. I think I scared her with my enthusiasm. And, following the quizzes she was afraid to talk to me on gchat in case she spelled something wrong. But we learned the difference between loath/loathe and that’s what really matters.

It was a day of learning and embracing the fact that my heart beats a little faster when I spend TWENTY minutes reading about commas!

So, on this day of grammar, I share with you my favorite punctuation mark – aside from the Oxford Comma (my one true love):

interrobang

Hello, Interrobang. Seriously, what’s not to love. You can exclaim AND question at the same time. HOW CAN YOU NOT LOVE THIS?! (See? See how I could have used the interrobang there if it were an option on my keyboard?)

I wish I could walk around with this on t-shirt. It’s amazing. I want to tattoo it on my body and flash it at relevant times. First there was Superman, then there was INTERROBANG! Plus, it’s fun to say.

There’s really no good way to conclude this other to say that I’m pretty sure that even my parents are judging me right now. 

Because when you say, “What’s my antidrug? GRAMMAR!” You sound so lame that you may as well go smoke a joint to win back some credibility.

If it’s any consolation I’m drinking wine from a box. That’s the best I can do.

– Sarah #2


Boys created English. For that, I hate them.

September 25, 2009

I had never really heard of the word “husbandry” until I came across it in a grammar blog. In talking about the origin of the word, the author explains that the word “husband” originally had nothing to do with being married, it simply meant head of household.

Three hundred years later, the word began to mean “married man” (because most male heads of the household were married). Around that same time, the word husbandry appeared.

Here’s where I start to hate the English language. At the same time that husband took on this new definition, the word “husbandry” entered the vernacular, a noun meaning the management of the household and its resources.

Example: Sarah is in charge of the husbandry and feeding the dog.

HOWEVER, that probably wouldn’t fly considering I’m not a dude and therefore can’t manage a household and its resources. I’m a girl. I can’t do important things like that. All I can do is make babies and pies.

I’m not sure why I’m so mad. I have nothing against babies or pies. I don’t particularly want to manage a household, but I don’t want my mother flipping language to tell me what I can and cannot do.

I’ve come up with a new word. It’s a noun: womoaning. As in, I’m sick of all his womoaning. He cries like a girl from dealing with all the husbandry. Then I always end up cooking dinner and balancing the checkbook and mowing the loan. He’s such a great husband. And, by husband, I mean ass.

Eventually husband will be defined as ass and to cry like a man will replace to cry like a woman.

Don’t even get me started about the word “history.” Screw his story. I bet hers is better and more accurate. Because boys are always wrong and never remember anything and they totally make stuff up. Except my dad. He’s exempt. And Sarah’s dad. And Bruce – for now.

Also, as a side note, the word husbandry has since evolved to mean farming and agriculture work. That bothers me less. Maybe because I have no interest in raising pigs in which to eat. Gross.

Sometimes I can’t even believe how much of a nerd I am. I even astound myself.

P.S. I apologize to all my future husbands. I’m talking to you, Jonathan Jackson. I promise not to take my grammar rage out on any of you.

– Sarah #2


Nerd Alert!

August 9, 2009

Everyone who knows me is well aware that I’m a nerd. I’m a nerd for a lot of reasons, but the biggest reason might be because I like good grammar and punctuation. Everyone expects this oddity of me and everyone makes fun of me for it. Examples:

Me: the person who suggested using “he” as a gender neutral singular pronoun was a feminist. and yes, i do read about grammar for fun
Sarah: really? that’s so crazy. and … really? grammar? you were judging me for L.A. Candy

Me: this is why i get mad when people say their harry potter fans and don’t read the books. b/c they really don’t know anything about the story
Laura: you are fired up! you had a grammar error

Me: how come it’s distrustful but it’s untrustworthy? And why do I care enough about things like this to go and google it….
Sarah: You would.

I can’t help it. I’m a nerd. Whatever. The English Language is cool. You can make fun of me all you want, but I’ll just keep making fun of you for not using the subjunctive correctly. WHO’S THE WINNER NOW?! (I know, still not me).

Anyway, this is the first of what will probably be many posts on my love for grammar and punctuation. I begin today with the Oxford comma.

According to Eats, Shoots & Leaves by Lynne Truss, when you learn about commas, you first learn that they are for dividing items in a list; however, they are not required before the “and” on the end: I love cats, dogs and bunnies.

TRAVESTY! Do you not feel the pause that belongs in that sentence? The room for a comma that would help that sentence make just a little more sense? I do. Hello Oxford comma (also known as the serial comma).

The standard usage in America is to leave the comma in: “The flag is red, white, and blue.” Unfortunately, I notice that more and more people are leaving this comma behind and it’s just not cool. No, it’s not actually incorrect to leave it in or to take it out. It’s a choice.

But, let’s be honest, if you leave it out, you’re making the wrong choice. I’m on team Oxford comma. Seriously. And my team always wins.

I can feel you all judging me for even knowing what an Oxford comma is. Everyone needs a hobby. Grammar: my anti-drug. Just wait, maybe it will catch on.

And I can’t be that uncool. The band “Vampire Weekend” sings about the Oxford comma: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P_i1xk07o4g

So stick that in your dictionary and read it.

– Sarah #2