Notes from An Alien

~ Explorations In Reading, Writing & Publishing ~

What’s Grammar Good For, Anyway?

I heard, many years ago, and have had it somewhat proven in the meantime, that the English grammar taught to us is actually Latin grammar.

I’m sure someone has written all this up nicely and I’m sure there are now books proclaiming to be Real English Grammar

I, honestly, don’t care.

As long as what I write is understood by most of the folks who read it, I’ll be happy with my knowledge of how words “should” go together.

I’ve learned what I know about wordsmithing by being a voracious reader—perhaps some of the authors of all those books knew their grammar

But, there are places where “proper” “grammar” might be called for:

— certain classes in certain schools

— a few resumes offered to select companies

— grammar blogs (only certain ones)

— various grammar books

Obviously, I’ve learned how to put words together—just ask my friends :-)

So, I suppose I use some sort of grammar

If you think what I’ve written so far in this post is drivel or worse, please let me have it in the Comments.

If you sort of agree with some of it, watch this video

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14 responses to “What’s Grammar Good For, Anyway?

  1. chazdesimone July 1, 2013 at 1:00 am

    Alexander, I’ve often thought the same regarding design and typography (especially when I’m losing money on a frustrating client). Why not just two or three fonts, or maybe even one? And aside from fitting everything on a page so it can be comprehended, who cares about this color or that embellishment? I’m not being coy either, I really have wondered–why?

    Of course, I’ve also wondered why we even exist.

    To feed the cat, I guess.


  2. chazdesimone July 1, 2013 at 1:15 am

    Okay, the cat is full.

    So I then watched the video you included with this post about grammar. Unlike most stuff on YouTube, especially if it’s more than 10 seconds long, enjoyed every word, every syllable, every punctuation mark for the full 394 seconds, craving more as it ended, entertained as I haven’t been by a clever use of typography in a long time. This was a true delight! Thanks, Alexander.

    Now I gotta clean up a hairball.


  3. penpusherpen July 1, 2013 at 4:17 am

    ah, Grammer, words that jar or words that gel, Alexander, I agree with chazdesimone, the video was a special treat, a virtual banquet of tidbits, narrated by Stephen Fry, a favourite of mine. he could keep my interest on any subject. Words, words, words. Love ’em. even ones used in the wrong context, but who’s to say it’s wrong? Personal choice methinks, if it jars, then change it to your own specifications., you are the writer when all said and done, be a man my son ;-) xPenx


  4. deadeyescribe July 1, 2013 at 9:37 am

    Ha ha I love that video! Did he say, “Sod ’em to Hades”? I’ll have to find a way to work that gem in during my next job interview!


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