Wednesday, January 14, 2009

WHAT I HATE TODAY: Your daily dose of negative energy

Today I hate the word “whom.” I know when and how to use it correctly,* but to use it in speech or in writing now sounds stilted and excessively formal. Be honest -- when you are confident that there are no grammarians lurking about, do you actually say things like, “Whom should I give the money to?” or “Whom are you going out with?” Neither does anyone else, unless they’re trying to show off their mastery of pronoun selection.

* That is, according to oppressive phallocentric racist homophobic misogynist sizeist ageist “rules” concocted by prescriptivist grammarians. Did you know that all prescriptivist grammarians are virgins? It’s true! That’s why there are so few of them -- they can’t reproduce.


  1. Lawrence ... loving your blog. Been reading it since you first started it. Having some good chuckles.


  2. When there are prescriptivist grammarians lurking, thou shouldst say "To whom should I give the money?", as thou shalt not end thy sentences with prepositions.

    By the by, whence come these grammarians, if they cannot reproduce themselves? Do they spring from the earth, fully formed, like maggots spontaneously generated by rotting meat? Are they composed of phlogiston? Luminiferous aether? Frankly, I am not certain that I credit thy fantastic tales of grammarians. I suspect that they may be no more real than the kanga-roo, or the fabled Orang of far-off Borneo.

  3. Thank you Christine… I hope you are staying active this winter. We miss you at the SLF!

  4. LOL Greg… I thought someone might mention the thing about ending sentences with prepositions, another rule that common usage has rendered obsolete. It must go the way of that cruel hoax, the Platy-Pus.

    Prescriptivist grammarians are, like mules, the sterile offspring of two similar species: geophysicists and fence posts.