Monday, 15 February 2010

Ungood English #4

... or is it ...?

I am, as you might have noticed, a stickler. I get bugged by poor grammar.

I should clarify that it's not typing errors that vex me - let's face it, we're all capable of the odd slip. What I find irritating is a laziness or a lack of care. Or worse, people thinking it makes them look clever to use punctuation, only to look like a numpty for using it badly.

My favourite all time boob was in an email that was forwarded to me by accident. The background is that I'd been asked to proof read a report which contained an over enthusiastic use of inverted commas. I took out any that weren't required (which was all of them). The author didn't like this and sent an email to my boss complaining about my attitude (!), and this was inadvertently forwarded to me. In it was the phrase, "she says I use too many "inverted commas"". Honestly. you couldn't make it up.

Anyway, I digress. I spotted a poster today which made me laugh so much that a bit of wee came out. The thing which is amusing is that it's SO wrong, that it's actually right!

As background for international readers, there is a show currently on TV here called Dancing On Ice. I don't know if it's something rolled out around the world. One can only hope not. It's a reality show in which professional ice dancers are paired up with celebrity novices, and have to complete weekly to stay in. The calibre of celebrity is, frankly, poor. Of the 14 contestants this year, there are six retired soap opera actors, two people who aren't famous, but are married to famous people, an 80's pop star, a retired athlete, and four people who, frankly, they could have picked up at the bus stop for all I know. Get the idea?

So you can see, then, why this is so fabulously wrong!


  1. I like this very much. I am trying to cut down or perhaps give up altogether my overuse of exclamation marks over Lent but I am not sure I will be able to do it. Please feel free to pick me up on grammar whenever you like as I am very used to it! (Damn!)

  2. This did actually make me laugh out loud! Maybe the sign wasn't a mistake. Maybe the writer was having a private joke and letting the world know what they actually thought of the so-called 'stars'?? I certainly hope so...

  3. As someone who always asks "who's that?" when Strictly Come Dancing is accidentally on the telly I'm with you all the way. "Stars" indeed.

  4. I liked it when, for the second series of "Celebrity Love Island" ITV was forced to admit defeat and drop the word "celebrity". The eventual winner was a woman whose claim to fame was that her mum used to be married to Paul Gascoigne.

  5. Hahaha! There's a great billboard on the outside of a Wellington bathroom & plumbing business that says, "Come and see us for a great "bathroom deal."" I always think it sounds a bit rude.

  6. Ha! I wonder how many have "signed up" for those lessons. ;)


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