Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Adults Who Make Third Grade Grammar Mistakes on a Regular Basis

Before you jump down my throat for being a grammar Nazi, I ask you to note two things: number one, didn’t you read my post about comparing people to Nazis? Asshole. Number two, please look at the title again, carefully. Then read on.

From Kim Karshadian's Twitter:

@KimKardashian Kim Kardashian Good workout today! Did everyone get there's in?

Look how my boobs stay up on they're own!

Okay, I know Kim Kardashian doesn’t exactly set the gold standard for intelligence, but this is a frighteningly common mistake amongst our population. There. Their. They’re.

A place with unlimited Chinese food? I want to go to there.

Their family adopted a boy from Korea named Annyong.

Alison’s farts? They’re the worst smelling things in the world!

There. Their. They’re. Everyone did not get there’s in, Kim. People may have gotten theirs in. Like I wanna get my slap in your face. Speaking of your...

Possessive. Not possessive. That’s all you need to know.

These are your hammer pants.

You’re the only person I know who still has hammer pants.

If you can’t replace it with “you are,” it’s your. That’s all you need to remember, people. Why is that so hard?

Speaking of possession...

What can I say, I belong to the little green wedge. It's not. That. Difficult.

The honeybadger killed the prey with its sharp teeth.

Honeybadger don't care if it's dangerous out there.

If you can't replace it with "it is," then you need to write its. Got it?

Now back to the title of this post: the key words here are THIRD GRADE GRAMMAR and REGULAR BASIS. I rarely smite people for incorrect use of a semi colon or whom vs. who - these are things a lot of people don’t learn until they’re a little older, and I understand that kind of stuff is easy to let slip. But when you correct anyone on “you’re/your” or “their/there/they’re,” they almost always KNOW what they did was wrong afterwards. Because everyone learned that shit when they were seven years old! There’s NO excuse.

At the same time, I’m not unreasonable - I understand the occasional flub, especially in a quick text message or instant message, gchat conversation, whatever. It happens. As some of my friends know, that doesn’t stop me from correcting you when it happens, but it doesn’t make me groan with shame and disrespect.

I also get called a bitch sometimes. But this bitch has a badge, suckas!

This brings me to the “regular basis” piece - there are people - people I have worked with - who had master’s degrees - that made these mistakes so fucking often that I was embarrassed to be employed by the same institution that hired them. That’s when I truly start to question your intelligence, because if you’re screwing these simple basic words up so often that it becomes an office joke, you need to look at your life and your choices. No, I don’t believe anyone truly made the choice to misspell everything or use their/they’re/there inappropriately, but they did make the choice not to read over their email again. They did make the choice not to have a trusted friend with a sharp eye read over their email before they sent it out to several colleagues. And that’s where the annoyance comes in - if you know you write like shit, you better have some plan in place to correct it, because you don’t want to be seen as the village idiot. Unless you don’t think you write like shit. In that case I don’t know what to do with you. Go walk into traffic.

Are you happy now? Idiot.

I could go on about this general issue for 10 more pages - discussing how “acrossed” (across’d? acrost? How do people assume that is spelled?) is Not. A. Word. Or how “alls we have to do” makes me want to punch a baby. Alot is never, never, never a single word (auto correct wouldn’t even let me type it without a fight!). Apostrophes are so misused it's almost useless to discuss. I could also write an entirely separate entry about spelling errors, although I tend to be a bit more forgiving with those, having several highly intelligent friends who are notoriously shitty spellers.

I could also make an entirely separate entry about how anyone under the age of 20 is seemingly incapable of communicating effectively and clearly - thanks to lax school standards, email, text messaging, tweeting, etc., spelling out full sentences seems to have gone down the drain. As someone whose job used to involve many many emails from 18 years olds*, I can tell you the "urs," "thx," and "plz" are now considered appropriate by today's children. Holy shit do I fear for the future.

But nay, for now I will only focus on the little things. Because when you can't handle the simple stuff - the stuff you were supposed to know by fourth grade - you need to grab a childrens' grammar book, hunker down, and study. No matter how technology changes, I think writing will still be around for awhile. Learn how to do it.

*That makes me sound like I was a professional molester or something. I worked with college students, you dirty minded bastard!

Monday, October 24, 2011

Sister Wives

In case you aren’t familiar, TLC broadcasts a show about a polygamist family featuring one husband with FOUR wives and a shitload of children. I’ve seen several clips, read several articles about them, and I am hounded with their commercials whilst I’m trying to enjoy quality normal people television like Say Yes to the Dress, but I’ll fully disclose that I don’t think I’ve ever seen a full episode. If you don’t think that means I have the authority to write a rant about them…I don’t care.

Problem #1 - HIM?

Still rocking a Farrah 'do, in 2011? Way to stay strong, buddy.

As Arrested Development once said…he must be funny or something, right? Great personality? (Note: From the clips I have seen, he is neither.) I’m against polygamy as an institution, which I’ll discuss more further down, but I have to admit that if Brad Pitt suddenly showed up with a harem of wives starring Angelina Jolie as their squad leader, I’d maybe grudgingly understand the ladies’ point of view. I mean, it’s Brad Pitt. So he’s got a few extra women in the house…nobody’s perfect.

But THIS GUY? First of all, he comes off as a total fucking douche bag. He’s an egomaniac (you’d have to be, right?), whiny, annoying, and all around just an overgrown man child. And. Butt. Ass. Ugly. If you’re signing away your equality as a woman and consenting to split a man with three other women, at least have the decency to pick a guy who looks like Henry Cavill or something.

What? Other wives? Why...sure...whatever you say Henry...

Problem #2 - Inequality - Not Just About the Gays

I’d be a little more inclined to accept polygamy if the door swung both ways. If not only could men marry a truckload of ladies, but women were free to collect several husbands as well. However, this practice is OBVIOUSLY forbidden in their offshoot of Mormon religion. Kody himself admitted it would “make him sick” if his wife had another husband lurking around. RED FLAG, LADY? Come on! You’re forced to be okay with him collecting wives like baseball cards, but if you even suggest the same for yourself, your religion would kick your ass to the curb. Where’s the equality there? The partnership of marriage?

Lots of religions are completely slanted towards men as the power holders (I don’t know much about Wiccan, but it seems like they’re all about the Lady Power. Willow doesn‘t seem like she would‘ve taken shit from a man), but condoning and encouraging a man to take multiple wives is such a blatant expression of male dominance. They skirt around the legality issue by calling the last 3 wives his “spiritual wives” or some shit like that, but to me that’s an even more dangerous thought - what kind of protection do those women have financially and legally? I guess he’d be forced to take care of the children if something were to happen to the marriage, but here’s a tip - you only get alimony if you have a piece of paper that says the state recognizes you two are married, sweetheart.

Much like the wacky sister wives comedy Le Divorce, starring Naomi Watts and Kate Hudson as sister wives battling it out for the child support of their mutual husband! No, I didn't see it, why do you ask?

Lots of people (including the sister wives themselves) insist they know what they’re getting into, they want this life, and they consented happily to everything. Here’s the problem with that: most of them were raised in families and in a patriarchal religion that taught this was okay. They have been fundamentally corrupted by growing up in a world where women are by definition less important than men. The sexism is so built into their religion that I fear they don’t know enough to question its oppressive nature. Just because you think it’s okay doesn’t mean it actually is. Lots of young women forced into prostitution think it’s okay because their pimp “loves” them and treats them nicely. It’s still abuse. Yeah, I know it’s an extreme comparison and that Kody isn’t slapping them around or anything, but there’s an inherent emotional power he holds over them that I find very comparable.

Problem #3 - I Believe the Children are Our Future

And this family is NOT teaching them well and letting them lead the way. They’re actually just teaching them that all of #2 is okay and expected for when they themselves grow up. Little girls, throw out your self respect now, cause one day you’ll grow up to be one QUARTER of a marriage as well!

Also, how much time can one father give to the classroom-size family he has? I’m guessing he hits up the Duggars for tips, but considering the sister wives don’t even all live in the same house, I don’t really see how he can be a present father for ANY of them.

Problem #4 - People Judge Us and Treat Us Unfairly Now!


Why are you surprised that people are against the way you’re living? It’s so frowned upon that not even regular Mormons (haha oxymoron) condone it. It’s illegal in every single state. As I referenced above, I know that three of them are only his “spiritual wives” or whatever, but they’ve made it clear on national television that they consider themselves one big happy family. So what made you think it was a good idea to say, “Hey, let’s make a TV show about what we’re doing!”

I think the one on the left is secretly trying to strangle that brunette, but she just can't reach.

They’ve compared it to how people think homosexuality is wrong, and in many states it’s illegal. To that I say - BULLSHIT SHENANIGANS. Homosexuality is still illegal in many states because of bigotry, fear and hatred. Polygamy is illegal in every state because it’s sexist, harmful, oppressive and stupid. It does way more to diminish the “sanctity of marriage” than two dudes getting married ever could.

Problem #5 - No, Really, HIM!?

Sunday, October 16, 2011

People Comparing Stuff to Nazis and Hitler

Disclaimer: Sorry for the lack of pictures on this post, but I don't really want photos of Nazis or Hitler on my blog.

I happen to think Americans in general are fairly dumb. It’s the only explanation for why Two and a Half Men has so many viewers, right? Our country’s education system is very publicly in the shitter. Our basic grasp of facts is woefully shaky. We’re stupid about pretty much every subject there is - and history is no exception. So why am I still surprised when people seem to completely misunderstand who Adolf Hitler was and what Nazis did?

It seems to happen on a weekly basis nowadays. Just recently, Hank Williams Jr. compared Obama and Boehner playing golf together to Hitler and Netanyahu. Playing golf? Together? I don’t know, that doesn’t make sense on a lot of timeline and logic levels, but I guess he was trying to say two people whose ideals are fundamentally different and probably do not enjoy each other’s company were playing golf together, and attempting to be funny about that. Here’s the thing. When you use those people, you’re assigning one of them as Hitler and one of them as Netanyahu. No matter who touches their nose and calls “No Hitler!” someone in that scenario is being compared to Adolf Hitler.

Hitler. Adolf Hitler. The guy who orchestrated the murders of approximately eleven million people (that’s not even counting everyone who died in the war). Right? That Hitler? Is there another famous Hitler I don’t know about? Who wouldn’t get along with the Prime Minister of Israel? No. There’s just the one. Obama certainly can’t be Hitler (psssst everyone, bombshell of the year: Obama is black). And while Boehner certainly has some lovely baby blues, I think his orange skin would also disqualify him from Hitler’s pure race goals, right? All in all, neither guy has ever expressed the desire to exterminate an entire group of people whose only crime was not believing Jesus is the savior. Hank Williams Jr., you FAIL.

Ann Coulter also recently compared the Wall Street protestors with Nazis. This is par for the course for lil’ ol Annie and all her friends at Fox News, who seem to have misprinted thesauruses that accidentally list “Nazi” as a synonym for “Liberal.” She claimed that some of the statements from Occupy Wall Street were “similar to what was said ‘before the French Revolution, the Russian Revolution and with only slight modification when the Nazis came to power.’" Only slight modification? SLIGHT MODIFICATION? I haven’t made my way down to Wall Street yet, so I can’t be totally sure, but I don’t think their signs about wanting higher taxes on the rich, the lack of punishment for the Wall Street goons who brought down our economy, and how easily politicians can be bought can be slightly modified to read “Aryans only!” “The Jews are the cause of our nation’s problems!” Oh, and the protestors are also NOT VIOLENT, so I’m gonna go ahead and chalk another point onto the “Not Nazis” side of the debate.

I guess if you change "love" to "The Third Reich" and "peace" to "The Aryan Nation," you're kind of getting there?

I haven’t even addressed the ridiculously offensive side of the Hitler comparisons - I feel like they’re so obvious it hardly needs to be said. But then again, I would’ve thought that comparing anyone except Neo Nazis to Old Nazis would be considered ridiculous as well, so maybe I should spell it out just in case. When you equate a fascist, sick piece of shit murderer who had the clear goal of taking over the world and populating it only with his preferred type of human…to…I don’t know….anyone else, that is extremely offensive. When you mistake liberalism and peaceful protest for soldiers who were more than willing to march into citizens’ homes to kidnap and murder them…that is extremely offensive. Is that enough? Should I go further? I’m not sure I actually can. I don’t see how else to explain it, really. Maybe I’m the dumb one!*

So next time you are thinking of comparing something/someone/someones to Hitler or Nazis, take a moment to think. Did this thing/person/people try to orchestrate genocide across several countries? If the answer to that question is no, you might want to find yourself another fucking comparison to use.

*I’m not.

Sunday, October 2, 2011

Personal Space Invaders

Some creatures just weren’t built with appropriate personal space detectors. Dogs, for example, like to be as physically close to a human as possible, curling up against you and sometimes even crawling on top of you to gain maximum coverage. When they are puppies they curl up with each other to gain maximum adorableness. They do not, in general, need their space.

If you have two eyes and a heart, it just melted.

(I assume some cats are like this, since people keep telling me their cat is “like a dog cat,” even though I’ve yet to meet one that is not a cat cat. Here’s a thought - maybe if you have to sell your pet to people by convincing them it’s like a different animal, it’s not really a species that anyone should be owning in the first place. But I digress.)

"I'm sorry, you must be mistaken. This is my chair."

I have found that this lack of personal space can sometimes leak over to people, with serious consequences. It is most apparent in the elevator environment, one that is already primed for awkwardness - silence, judgment, accidental noises, etc. There’s really no reason to add to the uncomfortable elevator setting, and yet some people just can’t seem to help themselves. You know who I’m talking about. The ass clowns who stand WAY TOO CLOSE TO YOU when there is nobody else in the elevator. You think, do I smell really good today? Did someone fart on the other side just before they got out? Do they just not see how much elevator is available for them to stand in? What’s going on!?

You go through all the options in your head - politely ask if they could step away? Could lead to even more awkwardness. Step away and move yourself? Makes it clear you don’t want to be that close to them, but still super weird. Suffer in silence during your ride? This seems to be the most popular answer. But why should the burden fall on you?

I believe the plot of this movie was that one of the people in the elevator was the devil. I think it's clearly the one being called out for her inappropriate elevator distance. You stay back, devil crowder!

I am here to assure you it’s not your fault. It’s their fault. You’ve done nothing to deserve this. These people are the same ones who somehow end up walking right beside you on the sidewalk, at the same pace, making it seem like you’re walking together when you don’t even know them, forcing you to either speed up or slow down just to get away from their awkwardness. They are the close talkers of Seinfeld fame. They are the jerks who plop down next to you in an empty movie theater instead of following the internationally agreed upon rule of one seat between people when it’s available.

They are life ruiners. They ruin people’s lives.

Living the dream, bro.

We must stand against them. Together we shall rise above. We shall fight back. We must look them straight in the eye and declare with one voice, WE WILL NOT GO QUIETLY INTO THE NIGHT! We as passengers of this elevator/walkers of this street/viewers of this movie have RIGHTS! You, stranger, are invading our personal space, and we’ll have NONE of it! Good day, I SAID GOOD DAY SIR!