Thursday, November 06, 2014

I Should Have Majored in English

I am bad at grammar and spelling. Anyone that has read my blogs will probably agree.

In school I always got bad grades in English and history. I think I just had a bad attitude about English. I always thought that spelling was a bunch of dumb rules that didn't make sense, and were always being broken anyway. Between the influences of Latin and French it seemed to me that English was a pretty messed up language.

I did bad in history because it usually required too much reading, which of course is an English subject and so my bad attitude would kick in.

Looking back though I really should have majored in English. Instead I started out as an electrical engineering major and switched to computer science. Computer science was easy for me and seemed the best way to get done with school and continue my career. I really didn't learn much in my computer science classes, my real learning of computer science was learned by actually being a programmer.

Being able to write decently has always been difficult for me. It would frustrate me when someone was more concerned with grammar in a design document than the design. Some people just don't know what is important. OK, maybe good writing is important.

All that said, and I think because I am so bad at English, it drives me crazy when people make some of the most basic mistakes in English. The biggest one is "I" vs. "me".

Me is a great word, but it seems like people are more afraid of saying me than of most of the vile swearwords. Using me when it should be I makes you sound folksy. Not good but excusable. Using I when it should be me makes you sound stupid, or worse, stupid trying to be smart.

It also bugs me when people use the wrong homophones, too, two, to or there, they're, their, or know, no for example, but I think I am more tolerant of those. Maybe because I had to put effort into getting them right, but I and me just sound wrong when used wrong and if an English dunce like me can get it right then it seems like it shouldn't be so hard for everyone else.

I just like to ride my bike

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