Tuesday, September 17, 2013
Pet Grammar Peeves
My peeve is the misuse of "I" and "me." As in "He's taller than me" and "She gave the money to Jim and I." Both of those are wrong and exactly backwards. I think what confuses people is that in some cases "I" is correct and in some "me" is but they don't know which is which. So here's how I remember (without getting into that "I" is used when it is the subject of a sentence and "me" when it's the object). If you can take out the other person you wouldn't say "She gave the money to I" (at least I hope not) but "She gave the money to me." So when you have Jim (or someone else) added, you still use "me": "She gave the money to Jim and me."
To know if you should use "I" add a verb: "He's taller than I am." You wouldn't say (I hope) "He's taller than me am" so you'd use "I" there, just don't say the "am" (or do, it's perfectly acceptable).
People look at me funny when I said things like "He's taller than I" because they are sure I'm wrong. But I'm not.
Which brings up another peeve: "like" and "such as." This is so abused I don't even know if we can save it. If you are comparing things that are similar but not the same, use "like": "The Chevy Malibu is a mid-sized car like the Honda Accord, Hyundai Sonota, and Dodge Dart." If you are comparing things that include all the items, use "such as": "Mid-sized cars such as the Chevy Malibu Honda Accord, Hyundai Sonota, and Dodge Dart are popular with young families." Use "like" for comparisons, use "such as" for encompassing lists.
Okay, done ranting.
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