I was raised to use the language properly. That meant correct grammar, spelling, structure, flow and the like.
It’s to the point where to this day, I remember the laughing confrontation my parents and I had when they read through a 6th grade Civil War report I’d worked on and found this misspelled phrase: “groops of troops.” That is one of the ways I remember the correct spelling of groups.
So I’m trying to pass on that knowledge and respect for the language and its proper usage to my own kids, because increasingly, online and in society as a whole, the language is being slowly gutted through simple laziness.
As an illustration, this is the transcript of an actual instant message conversation I had with one of my kids this morning:
Paul: Hey, don’t forget to put your clothes away and put the laundry basket in the laundry room.
Daughter: i no
Paul: that should be know, not no.
Paul: that’s bye
Now, I’m reasonably certain that my kids have a good idea that they’re saying things wrong, or using the wrong word most of the time, but they just choose to be lazy sometimes because it’s easy, and makes them look cool to their friends when they’re texting. Though honestly, that “ino” bugs the crap out of me…
I know I’ve told all of them about my grandmother, growing up in a household where German was her first language, and how she continued to strengthen her grasp on English by doing crossword puzzles. I’m kind of nerdy in the same way, as on my phone I have only a few games, but the ones I do have are pretty much just word games–a point which was highly poo-pooed recently by the very same daughter with whom I’d had the IM conversation posted above. I think she told me it was “boring.”
I’ll have to correct that, too, I guess.
See you tomorrow.