The English language is difficult to learn
Using words properly. Well-crafted syntax. Exceptional writing.
Somewhere along the way we have lost our way where these communication rules are concerned.
I am, in no way what I would call, a great writer. I have forgotten many of the rules of grammar and proper usage of words that were beaten into my brain in the 1960s. Spelling, however, was not much of an issue for me.
I, like so many others, now struggle with the specifics of past tense and past participles of the verbs, lay and lie. I have committed the egregious sin of using “less than” when it should have been “fewer.”
At the age of 60, I continue to recite (though silently), “i before e, except after c” when writing the word, receive. Even though I learned to spell well, the word that cost me the first place ribbon in the regional spelling bee was friend. I was six years old.
The English language is difficult enough for those of us born in an English-speaking country. I feel compassion (or pity?) for those who are learning English as their second language. Not only are the rules in place, there are the many exceptions to the rules. Throw idioms and colloquialisms into the language, and it becomes nearly impossible to learn.
English continues to evolve
I have lived for six decades speaking English. Yet today, I do not always understand what is being said. At other times, I simply want to cringe.
I never realized how much the English language has changed until I spoke in front of many a classroom filled with adult learners. I was often met with blank stares, instead of the participants following my directions.
I have also stepped around the corner after delivery of (what I thought was) a well-crafted speech to hear others say that they did not understand me because “she uses too big of words.”
Other words have become old-fashioned to use. They have been bastardized for today’s usage. Some will never make sense to me.
- I will always converse with you. I do not “conversate.”
- I will be respectful, regardless of our differences. “Irregardless” is a double-negative to me.
- I would have used other examples, if I “would of” remembered them.
Language may evolve, but there are some corruptions that I will forever have a hard time believing makes us appear anything other than stupid or uneducated.
And I ain’t kidding, irregardless of what U B thinking when U hear him and I conversate.
Photo credit: CC0 Public Domain, Pixabay