Speak clearly and you won’t need a stick at all!

So they’re we were. Looking, over their, at the mountains too our left, when, out of the blew, there colors changed two a bright orange, leaving us breathless and to excited too leave. So, your wondering why you wasted you’re time, reading, this terrible, blog with awful punctuation and spelling.

Okay, enough of that falderal. Look, I’m okay with some of the abbreviations we use in this modern world of texting and tweeting. But let’s at least try to spell our whole words correctly. The meaning can change drastically when we put commas and apostrophes in the wrong place and when we misspell words, or use correctly spelled but incorrectly used homophones. Like your and you’re, there, their and they’re, and two, to and too. Consider these two, dramatically different sentences:

“Let’s eat, Grandma.”

“Let’s eat Grandma.”

See the difference? You don’t really want to eat Grandma do you?

I know we all remember our grammar classes in school when our teachers would drone on about participles and gerunds and infinitives and prepositions, etc., etc. But it doesn’t have to be that complex. If we all learn a few simple rules, we’ll understand each other better and will all be better off. For an easy-to-read book that provides clear examples of when to use commas and apostrophes and offers some easy tips on how to understand why it is the way it is, you should pick up Lynne Truss’s book “Eats, Shoots and Leaves”. It’s also quite amusing. Another good read is Bill Bryson’s “The Mother Tongue”, if you’re interested on just how arbitrary some of our grammar rules are.

And while we’re at it; can we all, please, stop trying to be fancy with our language and just say what we mean? If a big word is required and it makes the meaning clearer and more efficient, that is fine. There’s nothing wrong with a strong vocabulary. But sometimes we don’t need fancy words or verbal gymnastics. “Due to the fact that…” What’s wrong with “Because”? “Utilize…” How about “Use”? And I recommend visiting Brian Clark’s blog, posted on the copyblogger site at http://www.copyblogger.com/commonly-misused-words/, titled “The Inigo Montoya guide to 27 Commonly Misused Words”. And try this one out for a list of oft misused and misspelled words: http://www.cracked.com/blog/8-words-internet-loves-to-confuse-with-other-words/

Be clear, correct and concise, people. It doesn’t have to be that difficult.