Suffering from a plague of tics

I try hard not to be a Grammar Nazi.

While I do wince at the sight of "there" instead of "they're" and other such abominations, I do my best to refrain from passing comment.

There are times though when I reach my limit.  Once such time was yesterday when I quoted a comment that appeared under an item on another site – "If u care abt ur dog I can’t understand why u wudn’t want to have ur dog microchipped."  It was followed by another comment which made me laugh as it summed up my feeling precisely – "Is there no way to shorten “understand” to a barely intelligible grouping of letters?"  Why do people do this?  Why do people insist on writing in this abomination of a shorthand?  Nearly all devices now have predictive text, or is it just too much trouble to spell properly?  I find it intensely irritating and just want to smash the writer's face in.

That apart, there is a tendency these days to thrown a load of verbal tics into the spoken word.  The phenomenon is not new – we [nearly] all throw in the odd “err”, “ah” or “em” into the spoken sentence while we take a mental break from speaking but the fashion now is to pepper sentences with “you know” or the ubiquitous “like”.  Like every sentence has like several “likes” thrown in to like somehow like add some kind of like substance [like].  I saw a vox pop interview the other day where some yang wan was asked her opinion on something and she actually managed to use "like" as every third word which to me invalidated her opinion as I just dismissed her a a dumb-fuck.

I saw a thing on Farcebook the other day.  It was one of those images that contained only text [why do they bother?  Text is easier to create than an image?].  The joke was –

"Always love a woman for her personality.
They have like 10 so you can choose.

Mildly amusing, but what struck me was the "like" that crept in there.  This was a conscious effort on the part of the image creator and I would dearly love to know what they were thinking.  It makes no sense whatsoever and they might as well have written "they have appreciate 10 so you can choose" or even "they have similarly 10 so you can choose" which to my understanding would impart the same message, but make equally little sense?

The reverse seems to be happening too where text-speak is infecting the spoken word.  I have actually heard people say "OMG" as an expression of something though I have yet to hear "LOL" [and the first time I do hear it they are going to meet my fist].

I find it all extremely irritating.



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Suffering from a plague of tics — 22 Comments

  1. The 'you know' one winds me up. Got to the stage one day when everytime this particular person said 'you know' i chipped in with 'NO'. She got more and more confused as she didn't know she was saying it. Why do you keep saying 'no' she says, 'because I don't' says I. The look of bewilderment was a hoot!

    • The unfortunate thing about tics is that most people don't even realise they are using them. 

      Try talking to someone and inserting the word 'cabbage' every now and then to see the reaction?

  2. Ah, but GD, where would we be without the Greengrocer's Apostrophe?

    Potato's. Cabbage's. Banana's. Apple's. Pear's…..

    It's an integral part of the English language; a proud tradition, and we would be poorer without it. (I think… :/ )

    Love the captchas, by the way! 🙂 It would certainly reduce the volume of internet traffic if they were introduced!

  3. The literacy standards in secondary school seem to be dropping each year too, and the kids are almost as bad!  Seriously though, for the last four years the Dept of Education has been sending boxes of paper to all secondary schools for the national examinations with the legend EXAM STATIONARY emblazoned on the sides. Someone's not watching the store!

    • Heh!  Maybe they just mean the exams are bogged down and unmoving in the past?

      Or a code – This is an EXAM box.  DO NOT MOVE!?

  4. Spot on, Mr.G! You have successfully vocalized what I have maintained for years! Perhaps the inadequate level of literacy nowadays could do a U-turn if we all disregarded this "modern abbreviation" bollocks? (or would that be "bolox"?) Keep posting, & I'll keep reading!

    • My pet hates are the use of "d" for "the", "b" for "be" [how fucking hard is it to tap one extra letter?] and of course "u" for "you".  They all set my teeth on edge.

      I must write a post some time on the etymology of the word "bollocks"?  I have a habit of using "bollox" [or "bollix" in its lesser form].  I believe "bollocks is indeed the correct spelling though either is acceptable.  It apparently derives from the Old English "beallucas" [testicles].

      There you go now.  You learn something new every day?

  5. I suppose you expect me to write a comment entirely in tics and ludicrous text-speak short hand now don't you? Well, I won't do it. I simply can't lower myself to it.

    By the way, the image in your post makes me wish I was more of a programmer because I'd write up a WordPress plugin that would actually turn that into a real comment "captcha". Maybe I could talk one of the WordPress plugin authors to do one up for me?

    • "a WordPress plugin that would actually turn that into a real comment 'captcha'."

      Quite simple I would imagine?  A simple form and a little bit of testing code to make sure they're not complete twats?  You tempt me…….

      • I think it could very well be worth the trouble. It might actually be a highly wanted item by those who not only know how to use those types of words properly in a sentence but can spell too.

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