Thursday, December 13, 2012

Grammar for the Gluten-intolerant - I try to keep an open mind about everything except grammar, spelling, and punctuation
Used according to terms by someecards
Is there gluten in this sentence?
Does its subject agree with wheat?
Have I splinched its little nose,
knocked it off its little seat?
Does its infinitive need mending?
Have I verily cut it in two?
Must its dangling preposition
wonder where it's running to?

Grammar ruins the written word
when master not servant it lie.
The nuance of a poem
made an algorithm dry.
Place your commas where God requires them,
but give the initial "and" its beat.
Is there gluten in this sentence?
I can't tolerate the wheat.

More On this: Seven Outdated Grammar Rules by Ecoscribe


  1. Never begin a sentence with "There is/are" Most of my papers would have received failing grades then..!

    1. I had not heard of that one either. Add that to the growing list of things it turns out I do not know.

    2. I've never heard that as a rule either, although lately as I prepare the next volume of my "Ki'shto'ba" series for publication, I've been removing the construction, mainly because in the Shshi language it doesn't exist. As for beginning sentences with "And" and "But" when it feels right. "However" is such a literary-sounding word and I get tired of it. And I split infinitives on occasion. That's an artificial rule imported from Latin, where infinitives are one word and it's impossible to split them.
      It also makes a difference whether you're writing straight prose or dialogue, which should reflect how real people speak.
      Btw, you did know, didn't you? - that you omitted the apostrophe in "it's" in line 8? :-)

    3. Errrghh! I am better at writing than proofing.

  2. I've been writing for over thirty years and had no idea rule #6 even existed.
    You are a clever girl with your poem. I wonder, though, to what extent do we take it all? Perhaps we can eventually evolve our language to a series of acronyms and grunts and beeps to convey meaning. Then I would not need so much coffee.
    I am old fashioned, but I think people should learn grammar rules, if for no other reason than to know how to break them.

    1. You should probably never take me that seriously. Guess who's teaching her seven year-old to identify the subject and verb and reading him Grammar-Land to teach the parts of speech? I just think some people get a little weird about it. It just starts to seem to much like Algebra, and I get bored.

      I seem to have forgotten all the rules of grammar. I am currently leafing through Handbook of Grammar & Style in an attempt to get them back. However, I have always employed pretty reasonable grammar without ever being able to define an appositive or remember the definition of a clause. It comes of all that reading and writing, I suppose. Having proofed my work, you are in an excellent position to comment on whether or not I am full of beans here. You can easily out me to the world.

    2. You have to know I was only teasing. I would fail a grammar test, probably, having forgotten the names of things and the exact formulas. I should probably read Grammar-Land.
      There are some mornings where I think a system of grunts and beeps would be an all right way to go.


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Faith in Ambiguity by Tara Adams is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License