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My Apparent Disregard for the English Language

May 7, 2012

As you may or may not have bothered to notice in my first blog entry (which was, in fact, me making fun of the automatic first entry WordPress provides new accounts), I hate the English language.  I hate proper punctuation.  I hate complete, succinct sentences.  And, let’s not ignore the fact that I concluded my blog entry by having the unmitigated gall to point out the way in which the internet bastardized the English language.

I decided, after completing my assault upon my native tongue, to write an explanation for my writing style, such as it is.  See?  I did it again!  THAT isn’t a good writing style!  And why do I insist on using all caps to create emphasis?  AND why do I keep beginning sentences with conjunctions?

Well, to put your mind at ease (and by you, I mean any former teacher of mine who happens to be reading this), I do, in fact, know how to properly write a sentence conjugated within the grammatical rules of the English language. I simply choose not to on my blog.  If I were writing on serious matters (for example, giving product reviews) or if I were paid to blog (for example, the way Chris Chase is, though he shows greater disregard for the language than even I do, complete with spelling and typographical errors), then I would endeavor to write within these rules.

This isn’t that sort of blog.  Not even close (another incomplete sentence, of which I am fully aware).  This blog is a place where I intend to air my random thoughts and give anecdotal accounts of my life.  As such, I am attempting to write in a sort of off-the-cuff stream-of-consciousness manner.  There are, I feel, some things I should warn you about.

The Ellipses and My Overuse of It

I am painfully aware that I plop down those three little dots without any concern for what they really mean.  Grammatically, as well as mathematically, they mean a continuation.  If used in math, for example, it would be found in a series of numbers which continues endlessly (example: …, 4, 6, 8, 10, …).  If used in a sentence, the ellipses is intended to represent “and so on” (example: socks, shoes, hat, scarf…).  When I, however, toss an ellipses out there, it should be seen as a point where I slip into stream of consciousness.  They are often used to break up related phrases which have sprung to mind.  I know this isn’t correct.  It is, however, the only convention I have thought to use.  There isn’t a font for this.  Italics are great for conveying the idea of something said in my mind, not for adding random thoughts which I would openly say in conversation.  So I have gravitated toward the somewhat internet chat based use of the ellipses… the idea that it’s okay to connect phrases with three dots placed in series… which I actually used to do in chat quite a bit… but, that’s a story for another time.  See how it works?

The Long, Rambling Parenthetical Aside

I couldn’t even stray from the parenthetical notes in this criticism of my poor grammar.  When you see my parenthesis, you should think “on a side note,” or “this may be unrelated, but.”  I will often put more than one sentence within a parenthesis, and for that I apologize.  I may be completely unapologetic about everything else I do, but even I get annoyed by that one (take heart, though, that for every open parenthesis, there will… eventually and at length… be a closed parenthesis to conclude the side thought).

The Use of All Caps to Emphasize a Word

Some people use italics.  Some use bold.  Okay, I actually do both of these as well. However, when I resort to all capitalization, think of this as my Chandler Bing moment.  You, look lost (and, by that, I mean of course that I assume you look lost…  I can’t actually see you… you should open the curtains… and it wouldn’t kill you to trim the hedges so I can get a better view, would it?).  Remember the TV show, Friends?  Of course you do.  Remember how Matthew Perry’s character, Chandler Bing, would emphasize words a little TOO much (as I just did a moment ago when I said TOO).  Could that BE more annoying?  Well, only if it were done in print.  As I do, when I use all capitalization.

So, Then… What the Hell?

Look, people, this is a blog.  What do you want from me?  I’m writing something here which is a made up word created by combining “web” and “log” … but then again the “web” was a nickname for the internet, and who calls a journal a “log” with the possible exception of Captain James T. Kirk?  Long story short (and, yes, I’m aware that putting the phrase “long story short” somewhere around word 800 of my blog is a BIT ironic), I will write on my blog exactly however I damn well please.  So, why then, the long explanation of this, concluded by a statement that I will do whatever the hell I want?  My hope is, at some point, to take ANY criticism of my grammar, and simply refer the critic to this particular blog post.  It’s pretty much my version of Wil Wheaton collating paper, if you will (or, rather, if you Wil).

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