I am a great lover of the English language. I love reading and I love writing. I’d love to be able to write a book, in fact it’s on my list of things to do before I die*. (*Please note my list of … ‘things to do before I die’… has recently had a quick review and an escalation of the time scales involved).
I know my diction and punctuation isn’t brilliant, and I know that I use …full stops far too often – and – dashes and ! are also used way too much. I do feel though that overall I have a sense of style in the way I write – it’s like the way I talk – direct and to the point.
Whilst accepting that I’m not perfect with my use of language, I have major concerns as to how the average person around me seems to have lost the ability to spell? I’m not talking about complex words or technical terms …it’s just the bog standard stuff that everyone seems to have forgotten.
Things like – to and too, there and their, of and off – along with pretty basic stuff like…. ‘i’ before ‘e’ except after ‘c’ …
I’m sorry but if I get an e-mail from someone that doesn’t know how to spell, then you’ve already lost my attention.
So you think I’m pretty touchy about spelling, don’t get me started on swearing.
It used to be that swearing was the pastime of the working classes. My mother convinced me as a child that swearing only meant that the user did not have the vocabulary to properly describe an emotion – so they resorted to gutter language simply because they knew no other way to get across their feelings of anger or frustration.
In a slightly more unusual tactic she also convinced me that use of the word ‘F**K’ would result in the death of a fairy. This caused me much physical pain at the onset of senior school when on telling this story to my peers, many of the older ‘street wise’ lads decided that it was in fact me that was the fairy….and that it should be me that was about to die.
As I have grown older my language has become a little more aggressive and those that know me will know that I do occasionally use the odd profanity. I generally do this to make a point or to emphasise a particular opinion. In normal conversation though I would not swear – one because I think it’s rude ….and 2. because I’m aware of the fairy population issues.
I have again noticed that there has been an erosion of standards in society. Watching my favorite TV program ‘first dates’ I noticed young men using the ‘f’ word in casual conversation with their dinner dates. Whaaaaat…???? One should never swear in front of a lady – let alone one to whom you have only just been introduced.
Continuing with the TV shows that erode our standards – watching Goggle-box nearly every family was saying ‘f**k this, f**k that, f**k me, f**k you’ ….just casually thrown in when talking about Coronation Street or the latest episode of Dr Foster. The problem that I have is that when one uses such profanity in everyday situations – where does one go with ones language when something extreme needs to be emphasised….?
The moral compass of the whole country is screwed. Children are being exposed to more and more extreme language, popular music is sexualised and porn is available 24/7 ….what a chance have we for a ‘normal’ society when this is the way we behave.
We need to back up a bit. Let’s remember where we are, and look at whose listening or watching our behavior. Let’s have some role models that we can get our younger children to aspire to rather than trying to be the one with the biggest bum or the largest fake breasts. Let’s talk properly and spell words as they are meant to be spelt, let’s turn off ‘spellchecker’ because we should know how to spell…and let’s stop f*****g swearing.
Damn it ….another fairy just hit the dust.