Thursday, March 1, 2012

Grammar Nazi

You know what?  Sometimes grammar Nazis are underappreciated.  People enjoy knocking the geeks and nerds out there.  We are called pompous showoffs because we have a vocabulary that goes beyond an eighth grade level.  We are called…well… Nazis.  Yep, people who enjoy words and delight in their proper and nuanced usages are equated with racist, fascist, mass murderers.  To be good sports, we laugh about it.  No big deal.  ~~~In all seriousness, I truly am fine with it.  Until…

I keep an account at to earn extra money doing child care, pet care and other odd jobs.  I was reading the profile of a fellow child care worker.  Holy cow.  Verb tense discrepancies, mixing commas with semi-colons and incomplete sentences were everywhere.  I know that makes me critical and ugly; she is just a sweet little old small town woman.  So I just pass over the errors.   Until.

I recognize—and personally experience—the apprehension that comes with putting oneself ‘out there’ for public scrutiny.  Nerves can make us say, do and write things we wouldn’t normally.  I surely want to be treated with grace over my own multiple typos and spelling errors.  I strive to offer the same to others.  UNTIL!!!!

I see that this woman works for the county office of education!  As she detailed the work she does with children at school, I just couldn't believe it!  I'm a big ol' snob and grammar Nazi. I accept that. But THIS is who is teaching our children!  You think it is someone educated and certified by the state, but if that chick is sick, this other lady comes on in!  She can’t even properly describe the way in which she gives academic instruction and correction.  I realize there may be instances in which one may not be able to accurately describe a particular activity.  But grading papers and reading with children are not instances that apply.

OK.  My rant is over.  I really don’t mind being labeled a geek.  I laugh right out loud at the jokes and pictures that mock the nit pickers, knowing I am one of them.  I am also aware that I make many errors in all my writing attempts, so I can add hypocrite to my identity.  I just couldn’t believe that this woman didn’t ask anyone to edit this for her.  We all make mistakes, but when you stand up to represent any area of academia, it seems like a good idea to get the basic grammar down, right?   

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