By Chris Gay
My friends, it is with great sadness today that we come together to mourn the loss of Grammar. I’d known Grammar for nearly my entire life and, as we had such a great working relationship over the years, I feel it’s my obligation to deliver a eulogy on his behalf.
Similar to many of our nation’s deceptive aunts and grandmothers, no one truly knows how old Grammar really is…or was. So let’s approximate his birth year to be 1828. That was the year Noah Webster published the First Edition of the American Dictionary of the English Language. If the logic of this decision escapes you, you’ll recall that CBS actually aired Green Acres for six seasons. I guess my point is, sometimes it’s better to just accept things and move on.
What’s truly painful is that his loss could have been avoided. Although a relatively young 183, he slowly began to suffer this past decade from the effects of apathy, abuse and neglect until it simply became too much to bear.Or was it bare? Beer? No, wait-it’s bear.
Grammar’s Untimely Passing
Grammar’s untimely passing is indeed ironic. For example as America begins the official remembrance of our Civil War Sesquicentennial, we’ve had greater interest in and occasion to read some of the massive correspondence generated throughout that era. Remarkably, those thousands of young men with little education and no computers, spell checkers, search engines or smart phones were able to compose a garden variety sentence far more eloquently than most of today’s college graduates.
In the 21st Century it’s easier to check one’s grammar than it is to find something for which the state of Connecticut will tax you; yet still we somehow managed to let Grammar unceremoniously expire. It’s hard to determine whether most people just don’t care anymore, or simply can’t tell the good from the bad. I’m not quite sure which is worse.
In honor of Grammar’s memory, here are two? Too? To? of his many pet peeves that he would’ve wanted you to know about:
If you’re commenting on an internet news story or a social media website and want to express your contempt for a fellow poster by questioning whether he or she possesses a life, that person would be known as a “loser.” Referring to someone as a “looser” simply let’s him or her know that you think he or she has a knack for rendering various objects less tight.
If the word you’re writing is meant to be a contraction of “they are,” it’s “they’re.” If you’re specifying possession, it’s “their.” If you’re talking about a place, it’s “there.” Such as, “they’re over there looking for their keys.” If you find yourself becoming increasingly irritated by a word snob sarcastically pointing out the obvious to you, it’d be “Now there’s a guy who really ought to shut the hell up.”
In conclusion, as we continue to celebrate the life of a truly decent form of communication let’s also hope that numbers can elude Grammar’s fate. After all, the repercussions of careless, sloppy mathematics would be much worse.
By the way, I know what you’re thinking and don’t bother. I absolutely made damn sure to spell check this piece thrice before posting.
God. The Devil. The Bet. The Fate of Mankind in the Balance. Check out my new theological, paranormal crime thriller, Ghost of a Chance.
What if a late 20th Century Jack the Ripper tearing apart a small Connecticut town was the result of a pancake shop bet between God and the devil? Imagine if Satan’s impact on the world in the new millennium hinged entirely on one police officer’s skill in hunting down a ruthless killer…hiding in plain sight. Detective Danny Seabrook is an unwitting pawn in a divine chess match with immeasurable consequences for all mankind. Set primarily in 1995, this action-packed suspense thriller features clever dialogue, humor and romance-with an ending you will never forget.
Chris Gay is an author, freelance writer, voice-over artist, broadcaster and actor. He writes and broadcasts a daily, sponsored minute radio humor spot in Hartford, Connecticut. He’s written three humor books: Shouldn’t Ice Cold Beer Be Frozen? My 365 Random Thoughts to Improve Your Life Not One Iota, And That’s the Way It Was…Give or Take: A Daily Dose of My Radio Writings, and The Bachelor Cookbook: Recipes with a Side of Sarcasm for the Single Guy. He’s currently writing his fourth humor book, Another Round of Ice Cold Beer: My 365 More Random Thoughts to Improve Your Life Not One Iota, along with the Ghost of a Chance sequel Perdition’s Wrath. He has written and voiced radio commercials, authored both comedic and non-comedic freelance articles, scripts, press releases, website, media and technical content, done occasional radio color commentary for local sports, and acted in a couple of movies and plays. He lives in Connecticut.
Hope Springs (Barfly)