I am not a master grammarian. I’ve never claimed to be. I make mistakes just like the next guy. Incomplete sentences? I love ’em. But I do have a pet peeve.
My husband calls me “The -Ly Police.” (Grammatically incorrect but his point is understood.)
When the weather man says, “Dress warm,” I shout, “-LY!”
When the Kashi ad says, “Eat positive,” I shout, “-LY!”
When the news anchor says, “traffic is moving smooth and steady,” I shout, “-LY and -ILY!”
It’s annoying. I know.
I mean it.
Really, really annoying. (Oh. You were agreeing with my husband and I was…..oh, never mind.)
Remember when we were kids? – “Ain’t ain’t in the dictionary so ain’t ain’t a word!”
Well, guess what? Ain’t is in the dictionary. As well as a plethora of other grammatical mishaps.
The evolution of language is an interesting thing. And I’d love to think that there’s rhyme or reason to the decisions made. But after some cursory research, my humble opinion is, “No.” There is no rhyme or reason. None. Nada. There ain’t even a consensus.
What is it?
Laziness that becomes a pervasive bugaboo. Teens that twist us into thinking that their distinct vernacular is where it’s at. (Ending with a preposition. Yep. Now acceptable in some circles.)
And pretty soon, we’re all speaking that way. It’s impactful. It causes alot of controversy. It effects us all. And it makes me nauseous. But it’s a moot point. (Ahhh, I kill myself.)
One thing I do know is that avoiding regrettable grammar is impossible.
So let this be a warning to all you media people out there. If the traffic reporter on the radio tells me to “Drive safe” or the weatherman wants me to “dress warm,” I’m going to be shouting “-LY!”
With every fiber of my being.