Saturday, 13 January 2018

Pedant reigns

Okay I'm going to go all old lady on you because I'm feeling lonely and grumpy and I've spent my afternoon watching Four in a Bed and Come dine with Me.  I do hope you have found something more useful or entertaining to do. I did plan to go to a bird watching RSPB place on the coast and then decided that considering it's bloody freezing and I would be either walking around or sitting in a hide, changed the idea, went to the co op and a lovely new green grocery and then I spent time considering pit disasters.
 I know, it isn't much of a way to spend your morning.I need a pit explosion, usually caused by firedamp or carelessness. In older times owners didn't give a shit. The men died, the women and children starved and how many days did they spent trying to get people out?  Often they had to give up because the pits were so hot and hundreds of men and boys died and not all of them straight away. It has limited appeal but I have to sort it out because I need it in the novel I'm writing. Yes,  I have written about problems with pits a dozen times but I need something new.
I got to thinking about words. Well, you do when you write novels and you are tired of another episode of Come Dine with Me and I thought of all those words I'd have banned if I could. the first would be the phrase 'it ticks all the boxes' Ouch. The second would be people saying  'you know ' instead of breathing and letting the pause take it.
Then I would ban all those pedants ( like me ! well, worse than that ), who spend their nights worrying about where the inverted comma should be. All I have to say about that is that language is fluid and Shakespeare didn't put his inverted commas and whatever the hell else in the same place as we do. Language is meant to go forward or we'd be stuck forever with people ticking boxes and not able to articulate past 'you know'.
I've got nothing against the word fuck but I look at it the same way as somebody who once said that a man walked up the fucking street, opened the fucking door, ran up the fucking stairs and found his wife having intercourse with somebody else.  Yes, please people, can you not litter your pathetic sentences with fuck It doesn't mean anything when it's every other word.  It's paucity of language or summat like that.
Jilly Cooper once said that the word pardon is worse than fuck. You say  'what' if  you don't hear or don't understand.
Just think about what you mean, breathe first, weigh it slightly and if you can't be original or funny just try to be interesting or ask somebody whether they are reading a good book. That is what conversation is meant to be about, at least it is when it ticks all the boxes.
It's January and everybody is dieting and taking lots of exercise. What about a little exercise for the mind?  Read a decent novel. You can always quote it afterwards. Brighten up the world with good conversation.

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