For All The Grammar Nazis...

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    Sep 24, 2008 4:29 PM GMT
    This pertains to another thread, but I thought it deserved a place of its own.
    Please tell us how you'd handle this:


    Picture it:

    You meet a nice guy at your local/favorite/unexpected place to meet guys. He has gorgeous eyes, is strikingly handsome, and seems pretty confident. He's totally your type and the perfect age, and is clearly into you.

    One thing leads to another, and you find yourself on a date with him. He's funny, witty, charming and gracious.

    Then it happens. In the course of a story, he slips in "All the sudden", "irregardless", and "ironically"(when you clearly know he meant "coincidentally"). Not a lot, just a couple of times.

    And, you just know, he probably has terrible spelling and punctuation problems.

    Good God. What do you do? Deal breaker?? Do you correct him, possibly embarrassing him? Let it slide?

    How would you deal with this situation?

    Disclaimer: This situation is not real. It has never happened to me. I am not a grammar nazi. This scenario does not necessarily reflect my opinions. This would NEVER be a deal breaker for me! Just want to find out how some of you feel.
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    Sep 24, 2008 5:31 PM GMT
    I'd sit straighter, and correct him coldly. Then he'd be like insulted, and I'd be like uppity, and he'd say 'forget it', and I wouldn't reply, and we'd finish our dinner in silence.

    And I'll go home alone... icon_cry.gif

    And Mighty_Q, it's "all of its own" not "all of it owns."...

    See? I'm hopeless. icon_cry.gif
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    Sep 24, 2008 6:09 PM GMT
    Thanks, Sed. I knew I could count on someone for that.

    It was on purpose, of course.......or was it??icon_wink.gif
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    Sep 24, 2008 7:16 PM GMT
    Mighty_Q saidThanks, Sed. I knew I could count on someone for that.

    It was on purpose, of course.......or was it??icon_wink.gif


    Ya. icon_sad.gif Heil Websterfuhrer!
  • PRDGUY

    Posts: 641

    Sep 24, 2008 7:31 PM GMT
    NO PROBLEM....

    Know several languages and can, if so desire, write/speak near perfect in all. As every foreign language instructor has said, in addition to my uncle who taught Grammer101-405 and was Dean also, the main purpose is to simply communicate/ get your point and meaning expressed. Now if that does not occur, then one may say 'Terribly sorry but I have NO idea what you are attempting to say.'
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    Sep 24, 2008 7:36 PM GMT
    While there are things that may annoy me, none of this would be a deal breaker. I'd only consider it a deal breaker (as I have in the past) if he were arrogantly egregious in his misuse of the language. I'm not perfect and therefore, I have no right to expect perfection from him.

    Simple ignorance of 'the law' is tolerable. Prideful ignorance is not.
    (Expecially when I ax him a question, and he don't know the answer.)
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    Sep 24, 2008 7:43 PM GMT
    Well said bgcat57! Being first generation Cuban on my dad side. He pounded good grammar in to us...because his was so bad. He would not even teach us spanish because of it.

    I would be more concerned if he is a nice person at heart and you don't fine that out on just one or two dates. If someone usage of english is a bit off.icon_biggrin.gif
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    Sep 24, 2008 8:03 PM GMT
    Some people are so shallow, and lack depth, and have nothing better to worrie about. or it helps them rise above their inabilities; we all have em.

    Well Educated, does not always = smart! icon_eek.gif

  • VinBaltimore

    Posts: 239

    Sep 24, 2008 8:07 PM GMT
    I married him. icon_wink.gif
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    Sep 24, 2008 8:09 PM GMT
    Then some of us such as myself are Dyslexic and it shows up in our writing and well as when we talk.
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    Sep 24, 2008 8:10 PM GMT
    I make mistakes all the time. Other people make mistakes all the time.

    I love it when I stop making a mistake thanks to being corrected enough times. But if a guy has no desire to improve themselves than it is a big turn off. It isn't just about grammar, it can be symptomatic of a larger complacency with mediocrity. And that is a major boner-killer.
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    Sep 24, 2008 8:12 PM GMT
    Ducky44 saidBeing first generation Cuban on my dad side. He pounded good grammar in to us...because his was so bad. He would not even teach us spanish because of it.


    I've noticed that the only people I've ever known, who speak close to perfect English, are some practicing professors of English that are in a University, and people to whom English is a second language from childhood (e.g. started to learn English between the ages of 5-10).
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    Sep 24, 2008 8:17 PM GMT
    I'm not perfect at grammar myself, so I would probably let it slide, but correct him every once in a while, and correct him if its a grammar rule EVERYONE should know by now.

    Oops. I meant it's.
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    Sep 24, 2008 8:54 PM GMT
    I wouldn't bother met at all. I would be bothered if he wasn't funny, witty, gracious or charm full!


    Mighty_Q I hope you don't let this get in between this person and yourself.
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    Sep 24, 2008 9:00 PM GMT
    Fo'get about it . . unless he starts saying "would of," "could of," or "should of." Then punch him and anyone else you hear saying that.
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    Sep 24, 2008 9:08 PM GMT
    Being a True Blue Aussie, whom uses slang I don't even think about, and coming to an American site. There are people whom have trouble understanding One. But this is not my inability.

    Aussies/Australians, have no trouble understanding Americans, even the people from down south. Yet so many American have trouble with English, that is not American; not having a go. yet those whom have no trouble at all. Americans can even find this a problem, when I'm talking with them too, yet I have no problem understanding them.

    Always found it amusing being in the USA. We both speak English, albeit one is Aussie, and the other American. Yet there is this big communication problem. Well I've dated an American for 15 years now. It's never been a problem for him.

    The real English is the Queens English, yet not all Pommies are able to speak this either.
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    Sep 24, 2008 9:10 PM GMT
    Mighty_Q saidAnd, you just know, he probably has terrible spelling and punctuation problems.

    Good God. What do you do? Deal breaker?? Do you correct him, possibly embarrassing him? Let it slide?

    How would you deal with this situation?


    As a former magazine editor I can't read something without mentally correcting the spelling and grammatical errors. But in social speech you should be reluctant at first to draw attention to the mistake, for the same polite reason you might also disregard some other little faux pas you observe.

    (An open zipper is the exception, allowing him to immediately correct it, or for you to accept the invitation equally fast)

    And don't be too quick to judge those with flawed speaking skills. I dated a guy for 2 years who was especially prone to malapropisms (also once called "Gorceyisms" after the comic actor whose character spoke them). Things like "It was an optical delusion" instead of "illusion."

    But my word-challenged ex-BF is a very successful executive, from a wealthy & important family. He can speak, read & write Russian, and also French, from his years with the family business in Paris (where he still keeps a home along with another in Europe, and several others in the US). He's very prominent & respected, on every kind of board you can imagine, and his counsel, and friendship, are desired by many. All that despite the fact he can say the most ridiculous things at times.

    I'd never correct him in public, and embarrass him further. And even in private I'd be indirect, conversationally restating what he'd just said, but using the correct word or pronunciation. He'd usually catch his mistake that way, and the next time he'd copy me with the correct word I had just used myself, but without our ever having had to mention it.

    Oddly, I love good-natured "put-down" humor from my Army days, even when I'm at the receiving end. But there are certain things that hit at a person's dignity, and there's a personal sensitivity variable you have to learn in the other person. Until you know what that is with confidence, correcting others is risky.

    So go easy with this guy, and give him some slack at first. Who knows, he may be a very smart, successful guy who merely has a speech flaw, like my ex.
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    Sep 24, 2008 9:15 PM GMT
    correct usage is to say "WHO uses slang" ... not "whom uses slang."
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    Sep 24, 2008 9:15 PM GMT
    Not a deal breaker..one thing is the occasional incorrect use of some expressions and / or words and another one is being illiterate and ignorant..if he is the latter than that would be a deal breaker for me.


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    Sep 24, 2008 9:26 PM GMT
    Kozmeka saidI wouldn't bother met at all. I would be bothered if he wasn't funny, witty, gracious or charm full!


    Mighty_Q I hope you don't let this get in between this person and yourself.


    No, Koz, this really has nothing to do with me. I got the idea from another thread that started out as a "Words and phrases that bother you" thread, and quickly morphed into an "everything that bugs me about grammar, punctuation and spelling" thread.

    I have no problem with people occasionally using bad grammar. I do it to sometimes. And spelling doesn't really bug me either. My father and my younger brother both have a learning disability and can't spell to save their lives.

    As long as I know what you're trying to say, we're all good.icon_wink.gif

    I was just interested to know how others felt.
  • Musclebucket

    Posts: 157

    Sep 24, 2008 9:27 PM GMT
    My Grammer was a Nazi
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    Sep 24, 2008 9:30 PM GMT
    Skotlake saidFo'get about it . . unless he starts saying "would of," "could of," or "should of." Then punch him and anyone else you hear saying that.


    How on Earth would you know he wasn't saying "would've", "could've" or "should've"?
  • nv7_

    Posts: 1453

    Sep 24, 2008 10:18 PM GMT
    Basically because he's pretty (and younger), you'll let him slide.

    If he wasn't, you wouldn't give him the time of day, and you'd correct him constantly and probably roll your eyes while doing so.

    ....and if you were into him, you'd brag to your friends about all his positives, yet if you weren't into him, you tell your friends how this dumbass spoke like a 12 year old....

    I'm just saying..............icon_biggrin.gif

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    Sep 24, 2008 10:26 PM GMT
    Mighty_Q said
    Skotlake saidFo'get about it . . unless he starts saying "would of," "could of," or "should of." Then punch him and anyone else you hear saying that.


    How on Earth would you know he wasn't saying "would've", "could've" or "should've"?


    Yeah, that's mostly a writing issue, seldom a phonetic one. One of my degrees is in Speech (when you come from New Jersey you have to do SOMETHING about it), which I think has caused me to love English perhaps as much as George Bernard Shaw, who's alleged to have said:

    "He who truly knows English, can never know another language."

    That's been my excuse for over 40 years, to lamely explain why my French & German are so abysmal, and why I've totally given up on ever wanting to speak anything but my native tongue.

    I think English has become the Langue fran├žaise of the modern world. Thanks first to the British Empire, then to the economic power of the United States, and finally to the explosion of the Internet, which originated here. I love to visit foreign language sites, and see all the pure English in their buttons and pull-downs.

    Which means, for the purposes of this thread, that we Americans who gave the world the English Internet, need to set some kind of example. If we don't respect our own language, how can others? And how can they understand us?

    There are many concepts of "power" in the world: military, economic, political, and so forth. But there is also cultural, which includes language. I foresee a future world where the US is no longer supreme in many things, including military & economic.

    But culture may be our legacy, that's makes the US endure and lead when our military & economic influence has waned. If that becomes the case, I think we ought to know how to speak our own language.
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    Sep 24, 2008 10:58 PM GMT
    I don't know if it would be a deal-breaker, this misspoken man. But I'll tell you that an average fellow with flawless grammar gives me an erection.