I wound up killing a lot of time on Twitter and Facebook asking people to share their grammatical pet peeves to use in today's strips. Jesus, that recevied more opinions and reactions than most of my cat videos do! Did you hear me? MORE THAN CAT VIDEOS
Anyway, most people had the common you're/your and they're/there/their gripes, plus some it's/its thrown in here and there. I could spend all day telling you how much "everyday" vs. "every day" bugs me even more, or how I think that the made-up word "alot" is a better mistake than TOTALLY misuing the word "allot," but I'm a full-time cartoonist, not a full-time grammarian, and let's face it, since I started to be vocal about my grammar pet peeves years ago, I've been humbled (read: embarrassed) by people who know WAY more about grammar than I do over the past few years.
So instead, I'll just casually drop in these wonderful links for you guys to read at your leisure. It's Friday, after all; like your boss is really paying attention to what you're doing at work. Besides, it's good for your language health! I hope you're wearing business casual.
Here's how Grammar Girl feels about do's and don'ts. (For the record, I agree.)
Ever wonder why spell it "whoa" instead of "woah"?
Or maybe you wondered about the difference between yay, yea, and yeah? (Scroll down, search for the words, and hit "Read.")
My earlier snarl regarding the word "everyday" versus "every day" is explained here, along with other compound words. (I'm a fan of using words like "alright," "altogether," and "already," for the record.) If you serve breakfast every day, like EVERY FUCKIN DAY, use two words. If breakfast is an everyday occurance (in that "everyday" describes the occurance), use it as one word.
An overview of compound nouns (beware the audio ads, sorry!).
I didn't listen to all of this podcast, but it seems like something us condescending part-time sometimes-wrong grammar nuts should listen to.
And, of course, my favorite argument for the Oxford comma, starring JFK and Stalin as strippers. (Credit: AEFERG Illustration.)
For the record, I think the Oxford comma should be used the same way we use apostrophes with an s for plural nouns: only when it's necessary to make clear our intentions.
Funny enough, humans created language so that we can all communicate our ideas clearly to one another. So it's okay to be a human and make your own decisions when you use your language, so long as you're being careful to use it in a way that communicates your ideas clearly to others.
That said, I hold the unpopular opinion that if you say "I could care less" SARCASTICALLY, knowing that you mean the opposite... it's okay. Just make sure you're very clear in meaning "like, as if I could care less." Say it in a valley girl voice; everyone should get what you mean.
I know I'm gonna get some hate for that.
Y'all is and will always be an acceptable word in my book, so long as you know where to put the apostrophe. (Y'all is short for "you all." Do not write it "ya'll.")
You can use "y'all" to define one person if you'd like to make them feel really important. Use "all y'all" if you're talking to more than four of us.
Intentional misuse of the word "literally" is funny to me when used as an obvious hyperbole (Brian Filon, this one's for you). Just make sure you know the difference between "literally" and "figuratively." The former means FOR ACTUAL REAL SERIOUS. The latter means "I'm saying this for yuks."
I love semicolons; I think you should all learn how to use them. Let them fall between two full, complete sentences that relate well to each other.