Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Children's Letters to the Loser #12

Dear Complete and Total Loser,
How much of an allowance do you think a thirteen-year-old should get? I take out the trash and do other things around the house without asking me because I'm the type of person that believes everyone in a house should pitch in, but my parents only give me $10 a week.

Dear Tim,
"That"? Why "that"? It should be "who." Things are that; people are who as in, "She's the type of girl who likes cars that get good mileage even if they're ugly." When did everyone start thinking the two are interchangeable? Why has basic proper usage slipped so precariously over just the past twenty years? I hear people insisting that it's "could care less" when anyone who can think about what words mean for five seconds know it's "couldn't." Only twits ever pronounced the t in often; everyone else knew it was silent, like in soften. Not anymore. And don't people know number should agree with verbs? "Is" is for one thing or noncount nouns, like rice, furniture and water. Use "are" for plural nouns. (I'm sorry, Tim, to ignore your question, which I can't answer anyway because there are too many variables -- you and your parents will have to sit down and hash this out yourselves.)
Your friend,
The Complete and Total Loser

No comments:

Post a Comment