Monday, June 16, 2014

You Can't Have It Both Ways -- A David'Z RantZ Grammar Nazi Post from 5/23/08

BREAKING NEWS: Janie Junebug of WOMEN: WE SHALL OVERCOME has invited me to do a guest post on her blog. Right now she's showcasing a series of guest writers blogging on the subject of bullying, and this was a serious subject for me to tackle. Check it out at this link, and feel free to comment!

*  *  *  *  *

Now here's yet another over-the-top diatribe from years gone by...

I understand and accept that the English language is a "living" language and, as such, is constantly being reinvented by those who use (or misuse) it on a day-to-day basis. So someday in the very near future, I expect grammarians to throw up their hands in collective surrender and say, "Fine! You want to make a word plural by adding an apostrophe 'S' instead of just an 'S?' Go ahead! That's the way you freakin' idiots have been doing it for the past few years anyway!"

But if you're going to change things, at least try to be consistent, willya?

Throughout most of my life, I've seen people write "mike" when they want to abbreviate "microphone." And in terms of what we laughingly call the "rules" by which the English language is governed, that spelling makes perfect sense. It rhymes with "like," "hike," "bike," etc. However, more and more, people are abbreviating "microphone" as "mic." That's wrong. Sorry, but I don't care if you're one of the increasing zillions who write it that way, but you're wrong. "Mic" should be pronounced "mick," as in "Mick Jagger." It should not rhyme with "mike."

Stop arguing with me! You're wrong! Shut upShut up! (Will somebody shut off his mic? I mean, his mike?)

I've mentioned this annoying trend to at least one person who seemed to think it was merely the new way of doing things, and that it would soon be a universal practice, and that I should just get over it.

Okay, then riddle me this, Batman:

Another trend I've seen developing over the last few years, especially where internet usage is concerned, is the tendency for people to use the term "pic" (short for "picture") in lieu of "photo" or "photograph." I'm not sure why "photo" is suddenly finding such disfavor. Maybe with the advent of digital cameras, people don't think the term "photo" should be used unless film is specifically involved, kinda like the "CD" versus "album" argument I discussed recently?

But I guess it doesn't matter, since "pic," of course, is pronounced "pike," so it rhymes with "like," "hike," "bike," and...

Oh, it isn'tReally? It rhymes with... well, like "mic" ought to be pronounced?

Well, whattya know about that!

Like I said, folks. All I ask for is a little consistency. But I'm not holding my breath.

Thanks for your time.


  1. Hmm . . . as someone who uses microphones on a regular basis (and someone who takes words and spelling fairly seriously), I will admit to using "mic" for the abbreviation. It makes sense to me, since the word isn't spelled "mikerophone," to abbreviate using only the letters in the original word.

    That said, however, it drives me crazy when people create their own abbreviations, based on nothing but personal preference, with no regard to what's standard or correct. And as a homeschool mama, it used to be a challenge to explain to my kids why "pie" had a long "i" sound, but "piece" had a long "e" sound.

    And now you have me thinking of "photo" v. "pic." I always say "photo," because (to me, anyway), "picture" is something other than a photograph; e.g. a drawing in an advertisement. Something where a camera were not used.

    Maybe I need to write a rant of my own. You have me thinking hard on this one! I've been out of the loop for a few weeks with my blog reading and have some serious catching up to do!

    1. I don't use "pic" for photo, either... but who knows what will come down the... er... pike?

  2. ha. were you the one that took a pic at the open mic the other night....its a good thing we are not lazy enough to need to abbreviate dick...or we might be in all kinds of trouble...

    1. "the one that took a pic at the open mic..." Laughed out loud at that one...

  3. And since when was the English language consistent? Through, threw. There, their, they're. Slough - do you pronounce that "slew" or "sluff" (I've heard both in equal numbers)? I could go on for days...

    1. I think the English language is consistent all the thyme.

  4. lmao ummm err so the cat is part of the problem, what you gonna do about it? lol mic just looks better to me over mike. And pic, that just came from being lazy with texting I bet, but I use it too.

    But there there are ones like lead and lead, bass and bass etc. If you go by that logic then it should be leed and lead or base and bass. So there, meh lol

  5. Funny... When you wrote "lead and lead" and "bass and bass," that's exactly how I pronounced them: "leed," "lead," "base," and "bass," in that order.

  6. Hate pic. It's a photo. Hate mic, too. Just fulla hatred, but I got a pedicure and my bright red toenails look fulla love.


  7. It is a little disconcerting to see how certain spellings/word usages become okay after they're used incorrectly for a while. It used to bug me when people said "literally" just to emphasize something, since literally is SUPPOSED to mean the literal use of a word. "Her head literally exploded" is ridiculous...but I hear things like that all the time. Her head didn't LITERALLY explode. That would make international news. But I looked it up and, lo and behold, it had been updated in the dictionary to state that, in addition to being literal, it could also be used as a word to emphasize something. (Sigh.) Watering down the English language...

    1. Yeah, I actually did a post about that dictionary update several months ago. Validating people's mistakes!


I strongly urge you to sign up for follow-up comments, because I (usually) reply to your comment! Comments left for me more than two weeks after a post is published will not appear until I approve them, but they will be answered eventually!


Related Posts with Thumbnails