Category Archives: Word Choice Errors

Beauty Overcomes Grammar

I’m watching Idol Gives Back on TV right now.  It’s heartbreaking.  (Click here to donate to Idol Gives Back, which divides the donations among six charities in the U.S. and in Africa.)

Many celebrities are making appearances on the show, including one of my favorite celebrity couples, David and Victoria Beckham.

Excerpts from their speech, which I wrote down as soon as I heard it:

Victoria: “David and myself are fortunate enough to be here [to be here to tell you to donate, etc. — didn’t get the whole thing].”
David: “Please join Victoria and myself in donating.”

The word myself is completely out of place.  It should be I in the first sentence and me in the second.

If you ever have doubt over whether you should say “and myself” — or “and I” for that matter — drop the other subject.

I am fortunate enough to be here — not myself is fortunate enough to be here.

Please join me in donating — not please join myself in donating.

I know that it’s not their fault.  The show’s writers are the ones to blame.  Though it’s within my rights to criticize them, I do feel a tad guilty insulting a good cause like this one. 

But I have to be honest with myself.  Even if they had written those awkward sentences themselves, I wouldn’t have minded.  They’re too damn good-looking.

Well, it wouldn’t be the first time beauty caused me to overlook grammar errors.  I think my friends know where I’m going with this one.  :-/

Please donate if you can afford to do so.  $10.00 buys a mosquito net.  That could save one or more lives in Africa.


The First Year Teacher’s Thoughts on Grammar

One of my best friends, Lisa, is in her first year of teaching both high school and college, with the occasional kindergarten class. She’s started a great blog detailing some of her experiences called First Year Teacher Resources. The other day, she wrote about outdated grammar rules and why she considers them to be that way.

Here’s a selection:

6. “He’s taller than me.” This is something I OVERHEAR all the time, and it’s starting to become a case of the who vs. whom debate. The “grammatically correct” term is “He’s taller than I” or “She’s smarter than I.” However, if someone is on the phone and a person asks, “Who is it?” The correct response would be “It is I”, when it’s really more socially acceptable (and much less haughty) to say, “It’s me.” Another issue of our language evolving, perhaps.

Click here to read the rest of them.

This is one subject on which I’m torn.  I don’t think that people are wrong when they say, “It’s me.”  To put it simply, there just following language as it has evolved.  There is only one time when I think I’ll do so — when I say “This is she” when answering the phone.

How about you?

A nice glass of “ice tea”

You know, sometimes I think that I’ll never find another pet peeve.  Then I end up searching for an ice maker (don’t ask).  While searching for ice makers, here is what popped up instead:


Ooh, I hate it when people call it ice tea.  It is not simply tea made of ice — it is tea that has had been iced and therefore iced tea.

At times, it seems like more people are saying ice tea than iced tea, at least up here in the northeast.  (I’m pretty sure that sweet tea is the term preferred in the southern and midwestern states.)

The fact that either Lowes or the manufacturers spelled this wrong only perpetuates this myth.

Have you noticed this?

“Is our children learning?”

During both of my interviews on NPR, I learned that it’s difficult to speak perfectly while under intense pressure.

George Bush must be under a hell of a lot of pressure.  Maybe that explains why he’s taken all those vacations to Texas.



It just keeps getting better and better. 

Image posted on “Good Grammar Is Hot” group on Facebook

IRONIC alert!

I’m watching American Idol right now and a commercial just came on for Milla Jovovich’s new clothing line at Target.  In the commercial, Milla and her design partner, Carmen Hawk, describe their designs.

The line features 1930s-style flowers incorporated in 1970s ways.  Milla then describes the line in a few words: “It’s whimsical; it’s fun; it’s ironic.”


This is one of my biggest pet peeves.  It seems like the word is only used correctly about 10% of the time.

(I can’t tell you how many times Paula Abdul has said things like, “I find it really ironic that you choose a song that would be so good for you!”)

So, this clothing line is ironic?  It’s entirely possible.  I’m sure there is a way to find this clothing line ironic.

Now, my question to you:

How could a clothing line be described as ironic?

It would be so different if we added a comma….

I love this.

Source: “Good Grammar Is Hot” group on Facebook, posted by Corynne H.