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A Festivus airing of grammar grievances

By Curtis Honeycutt

I do my best to put a positive spin on grammar. After all, having a solid grasp of the English language can help you get ahead in life. I’ll take that truth to my grave.

However, I occasionally receive visits in the night from holiday hoodlums. In fact, just the other night, I recorded this conversation between the Grammar Grinch and Syntax Scrooge. These guys are the Statler and Waldorf of word nerdery. I recorded them airing their grammar 

Grievances. Frank Costanza would be proud.

Scrooge: I can’t believe people still add apostrophes on their holiday cards. “Season’s Greetings from the Miller’s?!” The Miller’s what? The Miller’s dog? Never add an apostrophe to your last name on a holiday card!

Grinch: I know, right? Kids these days — going to heck in a holiday handbasket. Just the other day, I heard a few street youths dropping “to be” from their sentences! I heard one say, “The clothes need washed!” The next thing you know, they’ll drop Shakespeare from English lit!

Scrooge: To be, or not to be.

Grinch: Preach.

Scrooge: I like the idea of Festivus. That “Seinfeld” show had a lot going for it. Now, it’s time for the feats of strength. 

Grinch: Thanks for that fruitcake, by the way. Talk about “feats of strength” — that thing is tougher than a brick. It’s not the least bit moist!

Scrooge: Ewwww… did you have to say “moist”?

Grinch: I tell it like it is.

Scrooge: How about this one — a whole ‘nother! 

Grinch: Oh, brother.

Scrooge: I know the Instagram hipsters are saying this. I saw a video reposted from a TikTok reposted from a VHS tape in which a crazy uncle said, “That’s not my president! He’s a whole ‘nother type of crazy!” What is the world coming to?

Grinch: Did you just end your sentence with a preposition?

Scrooge: Allow me to rephrase that: What is the world coming to, you jerk?

Grinch: Touche.

Scrooge: Mr. Grinch, I’d like to raise a glass of heavily rummed eggnog to you and all the word nerds out there. Let’s quaff heartily to taking over the world with good grammar!

Grinch: Hear, hear! You’re making my heart grow three sizes over here. Happy Festivus, old friend. A donation has been made in your name to The Human Fund.

Scrooge: Better than socks, I suppose. Happy Festivus, ol’ buddy. Watch your use of the passive voice.

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