18 December 2016

#Grammar Wrongs < An Author's Voice

Dear Grammarians,

I am a practitioner of the Language Arts in its definition as the art of language. I study language/s with relish. I'm a fan of Greek and Latin, Old Norse and Old English and these are merely the opening act. My vocabulary is writ large and multilingual, rife with dialects or cultural contradictions, accents and shorthand. Language is a Grand Old Party, preferably of the Lincoln vintage. (Sixteen is sweet for a number of reasons. Pun intended or at the very least intimated.)

I am well educated. This is said as a statement of fact, not as a boast, though I am an unapologetic snob in many regards. I became both a fledgling etymologist (and a budding entomologist, because I dig bugs (sometimes literally) and appreciated the tandem symbology) around the age of two. I was, to put it mildly, a precocious child. Words were my first Great Love. I am enamoured still. Agape mou (not meant in the biblical manner). Fuck Words! Oops.

To save you bother, know that Strunk & White are dear friends, but their ministrations are relegated to an electronic book these days. Have I mentioned that I am also also a techie (and Monty Python fan)? I know Grammar. Hi, Grammar! I often choose to ply or ignore completely its rules. Alas, poor Grammar! I do so intentionally... because I can. This amuses me. I'm laughing as I write this. My smile is wry. My humor chiefly British. (See the perhaps fabricated er, exaggerated "History of the State of Georgia, former 13th Colony". I'm the author. It's a work in progress, but I digress.)

Make no mistake; however, I am an American. I am "big on" personal liberty (and its kissing cousin personal accountability). By the way, I adore parenthetical phrases and hyphenated clauses --- and overuse them. And I occasionally start sentences with "and" or "but", use Apostrophe mercilessly and dangle participles as I choose. (In case you possess sensitive ears, I will state upfront at the getgo that I believe curse words are the pepper of language. I happen to like pepper in my cooking and my speech.) Odd to you, these predilections are my right as an Author. I believe language should be fun and exciting instead of being plainly utilitarian. Loosen up.

Please also note that I often employ vernacular, colloquialisms and turns of phrase which may offend your sense of what is right and proper. Sorry not sorry. Do not feel the need to "correct" me. Stay your red pen. I am woe to call anyone a "Nazi", a terrible term for a reason, but if the shoe fits wear it, Cinderella. I know Grammar. Bye, Grammar! I am no student Hell bent on proving to some teacher that I can memorize and regurgitate a set of arbitrary rules. This is not school. I have never enjoyed being spoon fed. I am an adult who strategically throws verbal tantrums. Take a deep breath, if need be. Deal with it.

I am an Author. Toying with language and grammar is the very foundation of my Voice. I've been at it a lifetime. For me, the Wonder of Language is in its active usage and we all know this alters over time. Words fall out of favor or return to fashion upon the whims of Man. In spite of this, nay, because of this, I always march to the beat of my own drum, which may or may not be in step with current conventions. For I am a true Southern Rebel. Also, a real American Revolutionary. Don't Tread on Me. Quote me.

Caveat Emptor! (Boy howdy son, was that fun to write!)

--- The "Sybilant" Southerner, the Snake in your grammatical Garden of Eden.

P.S. Go ahead, bite the Apple. Knowledge is Power.

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