I would be remiss if I didn’t mention the video that was shared with me at least half a dozen times over the past week – Weird Al Yankovic’s song “Word Crimes” from his latest album “Mandatory Fun.” Thanks to Weird Al, I have a few more suggestions for future Grammar Hammer posts (but am always looking for more! Tweet your favorite #wordcrimes to me @cathyspicer).
I also noticed a familiar ring in Yankovic’s song. I counted ten grammar topics that I have also covered via Grammar Hammer:
- Verb tense
- Nouns and prepositions
- Less vs. Fewer
- I could care less
- Oxford comma
- Quotation Marks
- Good vs. Well
- Literally vs. Figuratively
Thank you, Weird Al, for showing us that you can be stunningly creative and still employ good grammar to get your point across. It also shows that we have a lot of work left to do. At PR Newswire, the Customer Content Services Team reads through every release and makes somewhere around 4,000 catches per month. We find a lot of grammatical mistakes and even more typos. I’m almost embarrassed to think about how often I end up talking about grammar with my team. Almost.
Make sure you also check out Grammarly’s exclusive interview with Yankovic about the song and the challenges of proper grammar in songwriting.
Have a grammar rule you’d like me to explore? Drop me a line at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Author Catherine Spicer is a manager of customer content services at PR Newswire.