o, sometimes, what really grinds my gears, is blogging. The online diary has made writers of us all. Any one of us within arms reach of a computer can tap out our “current faves,” our “daily rants” or even intensely personal issues perhaps best saved for our personal, old fashioned, paper journals. (If only we owned one) Sentence structure is poor, and capitalization and punctuation have gone tumbling into lost corners of our minds, forgotten. Heaven only knows how bad our spelling would be if we could not depend on our faithful spell checkers. The internet age has led many of us to take up our keyboards before we ever learned to master our pens.
Have you ever noticed how many people start their sentences with verbs? (That really grinds my gears.)
“Went to the beach today.”
“Had a good time with you guys the other night.”
“Did 8 loads of laundry today.”
Many blog posts are written in a halting, stop start, 1-5 word structure. Is that art? Poetry? I read lots of blogs, and more than a few are written like that. Admittedly, some of them are enjoyable, entertaining, but I always struggle to get past the way they are written. But the funny thing is, when I do get to a well written article, I find my eyes wanting to skim, flying across the screen to pick out only the essential words, gaining the “nutshell” of it in a fraction of the time it would take me to really read it. I have to refocus my eyes repeatedly to go back, start over and r e a d each word. I remember reading somewhere, (see, I can’t remember where) that in this “info age” we take in a LOT more information but its shallow. We may read a wider array of information on a given subject, but we retain much less. I know that this is so true for me.
I used to wonder why myself and a few of my siblings were so picky about pronunciation and correct sentence structure. A couple of summers ago, I learned that we come by it honestly. It was the one year anniversary of my Grandpa’s funeral, and we were at the annual summer reunion. We had a memory sharing time before lunch and it was so much fun to hear the uncles and aunts tell these great stories about their dad, my grandpa. My uncle Robert told us about what a stickler Grandpa was for articulation. He was earnest about his children learning and mastering the English language, although it wasn’t their first tongue. He often corrected their speech at the dinner table when they were talking. I don’t know why exactly, but I remember a warm feeling coming over me when I heard that. Perhaps it was a recognition of where some of our own traits come from.
I have written sentences that started with verbs. I have written in a stop-start, halting manner. I have submitted blog posts with nothing but pictures and witty captions.
But that’s easy. It’s easy to henpeck a Facebook status or post a batch of fabulous pictures.
I’m supposed to write.
And I will.