The other night my grandson Alastair asked me, “Nana, what was your favorite subject in school back when dinosaurs roamed the earth?” Well, actually he didn’t say that last part, but I’m sure that’s what he was thinking. He probably wondered how I could even see my books when the only lighting came from candlelight and the potbelly stove.
The answer was simple. “English was my favorite subject,” I answered. His is math. I hated math and was never any good at it. But I always was a good speller.
“I think people like the subjects that they’re good at,” was Alastair’s conclusion when I explained my distaste for math to him. He’s a wise child at age 10.
Actually, more generally speaking, my favorite subjects were English, spelling, and literature. I absolutely LOVED to diagram sentences. Do they diagram sentences any longer?
If you would have asked me a couple of days ago if I was a good grammarian, I would have gotten a cramp in my neck from heartily patting myself on the back as I bragged that I had a SPLENDID understanding of the English language. Anyway, that’s what I would have said until I reread yesterday’s blog post about spring fever.
And immediately spotted an error. “Bad for those trying to allude a chest cold,” I said. ALLUDE instead of the correct term, ELUDE. Arghhhh. I know these things. Rookie mistake.
So I corrected it, but of course the incorrect version that I put on Facebook remains as a permanent reminder to me that perhaps my grammar ain’t all that great.
Later that day I sent a text to my son Court, who is an amazing writer. Here’s what my text said: This is a test. Look at today’s blog post and find the error.
A short time later I get his answer: You misspelled temporarily. You have temperarily.
And so I did.
He also pointed out another grammatical error. It was about then that I stopped asking him to find the mistake. And went and put my head under a pillow for the rest of the afternoon.
More times than he cares to remember, I have said to Bill, “Must I be the world’s editor?” I’ve said this in response to misspellings on store signs or restaurant menus. Seriously? Doesn’t anyone know how to spell zucchini?
I’ve started taking photos.
And one more…..
But you know what Jesus said about casting the first stone. As for me, I will be working harder at proofing and trying not to write anything at 6 o’clock in the morning.