Great New Year's Resolution: Speak Proper English

Posted by  $  blarman 2 months, 3 weeks ago to Culture
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Language is the key to ideas. When people practice sloppy language, what they are really doing is admitting their own disordered thought patterns. Using proper language, spelling, diction, and vocabulary is the sign of someone who has taken the time to discipline their thoughts. It also reminds me of a scene from "Akeela and the Bee" where the spelling coach instructs young Akeela on the necessity for proper use of grammar.
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  • Posted by  $  exceller 2 months, 3 weeks ago
    Thank you for posting that.

    I am driven to exasperation daily by the "like" crowd.

    And if you think it is only the "average people", whoever they are, use it you are mistaken. I heard/saw a number of "celebrities" doing the same thing, which obviously gives us an insight of their level of intellect, if we can use the word.

    One of the (main) reasons for this is the culture of videos and audios where people do not learn writing or spelling.

    An example from my area when a guy in the classroom presented a paper on "guerilla warfare", misspelling the word for "gorilla" throughout the paper.

    I don't think it is going to get better. Schools are preoccupied by PC curriculum and pay little attention to essential things. We have to do the homework ourselves.
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    • Posted by Steven-Wells 2 months, 2 weeks ago
      Filling verbal space with frequent “um” / “like” / “ya know” is called embolalia, and ya’ know, it like drives me like, ya’ know, like nuts.
      I switch radio or TV stations when a speaker presents the third “ya’ know” in a minute or two, or at the first instance of two of them consecutively placed: “It shows my ya’ know, ya’ know, creativity.”
      For in-person conversationalists who drastically overdo “ya know,” I’ll strike back with “no, I don’t know” at clang response speed to display by example how irritating their embolalia is.
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      • Posted by  $  2 months, 2 weeks ago
        That will be my new word of the day: embolalia. Thanks!

        Question: does that make someone who hedges when speaking falsehoods an embolaliar? =D
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        • Posted by Steven-Wells 2 months, 2 weeks ago
          Only if there is a lot of filler noise: Um, like, Guam is, ya' know, um a small island, and um, putting a lot of um soldiers there will um make the island ya' know, capsize.
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          • Posted by  $  2 months, 2 weeks ago
            ROFL. If I had been drinking milk, well...

            Still can't believe an elected official could be that ignorant, but then again I'm confronted by people like Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and I am pointedly reminded that yes, yes there really are more of them. Then comes the sobering thought: and they vote!
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            • Posted by Steven-Wells 2 months, 2 weeks ago
              Even worse, Congress-child Occasional-Cortex votes in the House. With all her bartender experience to help her say stupid things, like the "three chambers of government." When I mentioned to my brother that she had said that, he said he'd cut her some slack because many people might say "chambers" instead of "branches." But when I explained that her chambers were the House, the Senate, and the President, he recanted with, "Ohhh Nooo!"
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      • Posted by  $  exceller 2 months, 2 weeks ago
        Thanks for reminding me. Yes "ya know" is the other one that makes me reach for the remote.

        While "ya know" has been around for decades (I remember hearing it back in the 70s) the "like" phenomenon is more current. It can't be older than 2 decades the most, unless I am mistaken.

        The latter one has infected people from Hollywood (I hear "celebrities" pepper their sentences with it which reflects on their single digit IQ) to the teenage generation where you hear nothing else.
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        • Posted by Steven-Wells 2 months, 2 weeks ago
          "Like" flowered in the period you suggest. Like, gag me with a spoon.

          Here's a poem I wrote while stuck in traffic in February 2006.
          Modern Verse
          –Or–
          Poetry Joins the English Language Going to Hell in a Handbasket


          He goes, I think, “Ya wanna drink?”
          “Like watcha got?” “I got this rot.”
          Ya know like um, fer sher that’s dumb,
          And then ya know, it’s like they go,
          “Want Coke and rum?” So, she goes, “Um
          “Like sher ya dope, but like I hope
          That Coke’s diet.”
          He goes quiet.
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          • Posted by  $  exceller 2 months, 2 weeks ago
            Thanks. Never imagined it can be a muse but you did great summarizing its manifestation.

            The "uneducated" younger generation is really a pain to listen to. They start each sentence with "...and I was like", then "he was like".

            It ruins my day every time I hear it. You can't correct them b/c that is considered "disrespectful".
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  • Posted by freedomforall 2 months, 3 weeks ago
    If you spend much time online you see widespread misuse of grammar and repeated spelling errors.
    It definitely changes my degree of respect for someone when they do not properly use the language.
    My usage is flawed, too, but I make an effort to eliminate the most obvious errrors.
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    • Posted by  $  exceller 2 months, 2 weeks ago
      You'd think it is an easy enough effort to present your sentences correctly spelled. We have the spell checker, thanks to technology. When you write, mistyped words are underlined in red.

      Is it too much of an effort to click on it and have the program correct it?
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  • Posted by term2 2 months, 2 weeks ago
    One of the great problems with texting is "autocorrect". The entire meaning of what is said can be changed by this program, expecially if you dont have a lot of time and dont proofread what you write carefully before hitting "send"
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    • Posted by Steven-Wells 2 months, 2 weeks ago
      That is a major problem for the lazy, sloppy "writers." I rarely send text messages, and never without proofreading.
      I compose most of my writing in Microsoft Word, where I use AutoCorrect extensively, not so much to make corrections, but to minimize the amount that I must type to produce a desired result. Few Word users know to set (and document) their own replacements. Much of what I write goes in looking like text message shortcuts that transform automatically into real content. Though available for long words, the big gain comes from short words that I use far more frequently.
      Fe, wn I tp, te chh tt look like sm absurd msg tx im become wt wuda reqd more time aa effort.
      Or with my cistomized AutoCorrect:
      For example, when I type, the characters that look like some absurd message text immediately become what would have required more time and effort.
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      • Posted by term2 2 months, 2 weeks ago
        Interesting. It wasnt obvious to me that writing had morphed into something that needed to be done faster and faster and more efficiently.

        I do have the feeling that its harder to understand news articles in the last few years. I have postulated that they must be written by robots according to rules some editor sets out. I find that they go from what one person says to what others say- back and forth and I get lost as to who said what. Causes me to reread carefully and take a lot of time for that.

        I also notice that news articles on google news are excessively long and seem to repeat stuff over and over to fill up the required word count. Annoying.

        I have nearly totally stopped watching and listening to news on radio and TV- It seems that no matter what someone does, the TV/Radio people take exception to it in order to create controversy. If Melania wears a dress of one color, they complain some other color would have been more appropriate . Boring.

        I am not a writer, obviously, and tend to pay more attention to what I am trying to communicate, then how short a time it takes me to accomplish that. Maybe its just I am getting old...
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        • Posted by Steven-Wells 2 months, 2 weeks ago
          I am a writer, so I need my bag of tricks to make it faster and easier. Easier is important in order to avoid repetitive motion stress/carpal tunnel, &c.
          My tricks include programmable keyboards, programmable button boxes, AutoCorrect, power mousing, and voice input.

          As to the news, yes, it's getting worse. Too many Breaking News items about a bear in a tree or some cute dogs or that Nancy Pelousy and Upchuck Schumer still hate Trump.
          Then we have news consisting of last night's comments by the station's newscaster/teleprompter reader. And finally, providing only a few minutes for a guest to make a complicated point before, "Sorry, we're out of time—we have to show you this cute cat picture, and then tell you that Batshit Nancy has declared walls to be immoral."
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          • Posted by term2 2 months, 2 weeks ago
            Do u think writing will be done by bots in the future?
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            • Posted by Steven-Wells 2 months, 2 weeks ago
              Too many (disguised as humans) doing it already. I'm hopeful that actual bots will create material with better grammar and spelling than millennials and Gen-Z's. Google Translate usually produces plausible English content.
              But we have nothing to fear from Asian bots as a quick stroll at http://www.Engrish.com demonstrates. I just went through the "Menu" items, clicking Previous Week's Engrish until I had stop from the pain of laughing so hard.
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        • Posted by  $  2 months, 2 weeks ago
          I just got done reading a history of the United States from 1815 to 1848. In there the author mentions that that time period was known for its great orators - people who spoke not only in government but in the public sphere with not only eloquence but passion. The few examples made clear to me that the people of the 1820's were far more used to hearing and understanding poetry in the spoken word due to the combinations of word and phrase. Then the telegraph was invented which allowed for greater diversity in printing and distribution. While I don't think the quality of speech declined tremendously in that time period, it may be that over the past 150 years that our proclivity for the written word has somewhat eclipsed our acknowledgement and devotion to the spoken tradition. While I still admire those with the gift of "turn of phrase", I wonder how much of that is also culturally trained out of us due to the proliferation of written communication?
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      • Posted by  $  exceller 2 months, 2 weeks ago
        You are correct. I don't know how to set my own replacements.

        A lot of words I use come up underlined but Autocorrect can't do anything with them.

        How do you set your own correction?
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        • Posted by Steven-Wells 2 months, 2 weeks ago
          In Word (all settings work throughout all of MS Office): pre-ribbon, on the Tools menu, click AutoCorrect options. In the dialog box that opens, enter the Replace and With fields, and then click Add.
          wn > when
          bc > because
          env > environment
          exp > experience

          Ribbon versions:
          Click the File tab, click Options. In the Word Options dialog box, click Proofing, and then click AutoCorrect Options.
          The rest as above.

          If you web-search, you can find macros for storing, exporting, and importing your customized AutoCorrect entries. They go into a Word document table where you can edit them in bulk.

          Tips: Use non-words for the replace term, otherwise you might get unwanted results from ordinary words.
          apx > approximately
          doi > Declaration of Independence
          cmp > computer
          but not com for computer, or you'll end up with bad web addresses in documents, such as www.galtsgulchonline.computer

          I set separate entries for singular and plural pairs so I can display only a single entry in my cheat sheet. I set such entries to a color instead of black to indicate a pair. To me, from a typing perspective, the natural addition to create a plural is to repeat the last letter because I already had a finger on the right key. So:
          mgt > management (in black in my cheat sheet)
          cg > change (in dark red in my cheat sheet to show that I created two entries):
          cg > change
          cgg > changes

          You can also throw in transpositions that Microsoft may not cover, such as:
          nad > and
          or words that are hard to remember which is right:
          consistant > consistent
          seperate > separate

          For words that get underlined, that's a different issue.
          If you live in Conshohocken Pennsylvania, MS Office will not recognize the town name.
          You can edit the custom dictionary (or create multiple custom dictionaries) under Proofing.
          Perform a web-search to find out where your version of Office keeps custom.dic and open it in Notepad. Or create it if it does not already exist. It's just a list of words that will be "known" as correctly spelled.
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          • Posted by  $  exceller 2 months, 2 weeks ago
            Thanks. Very useful. I'll try it.
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            • Posted by  $  CBJ 2 months, 2 weeks ago
              Me too. Will it allow you to transform multiple words into acronyms? This can come in handy when texting people under 30. :-)
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              • Posted by Steven-Wells 2 months, 2 weeks ago
                Probably not. The trigger to make the replacement is a space or punctuation. You'd have to set the term without intervening characters; such as, TooMuchInformation. But if you already knew to type it without spaces, you'd know to type TMI instead.

                In case anyone is going to read this and isn't familiar with how AutoCorrect in MS Office handles capitalization (and would want to know), the replacement takes it cue from the "shortcut" word. If I define: cns to be replaced by constitution, Cns gets replaced with Constitution, and CNS gets replaced with CONSTITUTION.
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  • Posted by DrZarkov99 2 months, 2 weeks ago
    We are in an age where speaking proper English is fast deteriorating. Even supposedly educated people slide lazily into word misuse. It drives me up the wall when I hear someone say "and then they HONED in on the target," and I want to scream at the television, saying "NO, NO, NO, YOU IDIOT! IT'S HOMED IN!" I've also heard TV talking heads use the Ebonics "I AXED him a question," instead of "asked."

    It's only going to get worse, as "smart" phones allow the use of extensive acronym speech (ROTFLMAO) and emojis in texting. You can now dictate your text and have the responses read back to you audibly, so even the illiterate can communicate thanks to technology. Sad.
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  • Posted by  $  Thoritsu 2 months, 2 weeks ago
    Myself thinks the misuse of “myself” as a pronoun has reached epic proportions!

    Please let Tina and myself know if you plan to butcher English.

    Oh, and phuck your Oxford comma!
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  • Posted by  $  25n56il4 2 months, 2 weeks ago
    My greatest complaint is people who don't open their mouth to talk. They enunciate rapidly and don't open their mouth and we are supposed to be able to understand them!
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  • Posted by  $  skidance 2 months, 2 weeks ago
    I've always thought that those who fail to use proper language, spelling, diction, vocabulary, and punctuation are either: unintelligent; poorly educated; lazy; conformist; not wanting to do things properly; rebellious; inattentive to details; etc.
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  • Posted by rjkford 2 months, 2 weeks ago
    May I add one more vocal pet peeve? Since when do we end a sentence with "right?". I am hearing it more and more. Does anyone know how it got started?
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    • Posted by  $  exceller 2 months, 2 weeks ago
      It is just a question soliciting reply from someone you presented an argument/statement to. Hopefully an argument that can be considered worthy of reply.

      You can answer "yes" or "no", agreeing or disagreeing with the presenter. IN case of the latter you are expected to elaborate your own view.

      This is what I think it means.

      My favorite peeve is "at the end of the day" closing a sentence. The presenter is trying to emphasize his view by stating what's going to happen if certain things are done.

      How does he know what will happen by day's end? Of course no one is going to check it so the guy gets away with it, playing the "wise".
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    • Posted by  $  2 months, 2 weeks ago
      No idea for sure, but if we examine it, it is a plea for validation. If it were being used properly, it might invite discussion, but if used ad nauseum it just becomes another filler word: an embolalia (thanks Steven-Wells).
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    • Posted by mccannon01 2 months, 2 weeks ago
      Not sure of what you mean here, but I'm an old guy and the usage was around when I was young. It depends on context and the usage I'm familiar with usually expects a response from the listener or expects the listener to think about what was said such as "A equals A, right?"
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