A Guide To Proper Grammar

A Guide To Proper Grammar

It isn't easy being the grammar police.
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Many people just cannot grasp the concept of grammar. And that’s okay…when you’re a kindergartener. But if I hear a grown man or woman say that “they seen something” or that don’t know the difference between “their,” “they’re,” and “there,” and they 1) aren’t trying to be funny, 2) have a minimum of a high school education, 3) didn’t just learn English yesterday, and 4) aren’t just waking up from a coma, my brain starts to feel as though it is being scraped down a brick wall. I get it: English is a tough language. But the people to whom I am referring have spoken the language since birth and have no real excuse to not understand simple sentence structure. I know they’re (see what I did there?) still teaching English composition, grammar and writing in primary schools, so what gives? But have no fear; I’m here to help.


So, to prevent your friends from wanting to scrape your brain down a brick wall, here are a few basic tips for acceptable grammar.

  • Spell check and grammar check is wrong
    • I hate to break it to you but those little squiggly red and green lines under your words on Microsoft Word are lying to you. Sometimes, they’re correct. But other times, they are just plain wrong. It’s a computer; it thinks it knows what you want to say. But you are smarter than a machine. Why? Because you’re a functioning person. And a person made that machine.
  • Saying “___ and I” instead of “___ and Me” ALL THE TIME does not make you sound smarter
    • In fact, in some cases, it makes you sound dumber. Here’s a good trick to thinking about it. Say that you and your friend Dave are going to a bar, and you’re telling your friend Stacy about it (because Stacy’s mean and you don’t like Stacy). You would say: “Dave and I are going to a bar.” Imagine it’s just your lonely butt going to the bar and take Dave out of the equation (sorry, Dave). Would you say, “Me am going to a bar” or “I am going to a bar”? Hopefully, you’re not the Cookie Monster and you would pick the second choice.
    • Now let’s switch it up a bit: let’s say you’re telling your mom about how obsessed Stacy is with you and your buddy Dave (“Like, calm down, Stacy,”), and you want to say: “Stacy is so obsessed with Dave and I.” Well, you don’t want to say that ‘cause that’s incorrect. Take out Dave again, and you get: “Stacy is so obsessed with I.” Does that hit the ear right? Of course not. So, you’re going to tell your mom: “Stacy is so obsessed with Dave and me.”
    • Always take out the other subject (Bye, Dave!) in your brain before you type something or open your mouth to someone really important and professional. It makes a difference.
  • Your vs. You’re [very good at this grammar thing]
    • “Your” is what you say when you’re telling your roommate that, that mess they left in the kitchen last night belongs to them. Example: “That’s your crusted old ramen in the pot and I am not cleaning it up for you!”
    • “You’re” is a mash-up of the words “you” and “are.” (Also, notice how when you couple “You” with a ‘being’-verb, “is” is not it.) So, when your roommate fires back at you, they would properly say: “No, you’re the slob!”
    • Grammar: Helping people be mean since the 5th century
  • Do not add “S”’s onto everything
    • You are not a snake; not every word needs to be plural or possessive. It is not Kroger’s; it is Kroger. It is not Walmarts; it’s Walmart. That’s just a little tid-bit I think everyone should know.
  • Autocorrect isn’t (always) right either
    • I know we live in a time where we let our computers, tablets and smart phones run our lives, but just because Siri is telling you what she thinks you should text to your girlfriend, does not mean she’s grammatically correct. Besides, we all know Siri is just jealous of your girlfriend anyway. Just because a word sounds the same does not mean it is the same.
    • When you have clothing on your body = it’s wear, not where
    • When you are asking your friend to tell you their location = it’s where, not wear
    • When you look at your newborn baby through that window at the hospital, you say to the other dad standing next to you = “That is our baby,” not are.
    • When that other dad is just being spiteful = “You are lucky he doesn’t look like you,” not our.
Cover Image Credit: parade.com

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22 Girl Names Your Random College Roommate Will Have, And The Type Of Roommate They Are

Will she be your BFF?
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Every roommate situation in college is going to be different.

All you can do is hope and pray that they'll just leave you alone for the most part. A lot of the time, you can get a hint about what kind of roommate they'll be just knowing their first name.

1. Hailey

Her dad pays her rent. She can't cook. Litters the kitchen with take out boxes from the local vegan joint.

2. Beth

Totally wants you to go to SoulCycle with her at 6 a.m. on a Saturday. Room is littered with leggings and sneakers.

3. Michelle

Comes home at 3 a.m. after a night of heavy drinking. Loudly makes some sort of frozen meal. Sleeps through her noon alarm.

4. Victoria

Probably has dark hair and an acoustic guitar. Keeps pretty much to herself. Does homework in the living room at obscure hours.

5. Madison

Was on the dance team in high school and has not stopped telling you about how great it was. Does work out videos on the TV in the living room.

6. Kim

Brings her boyfriend over every night of the week. Brings different boys home on the weekends.

7. Megan

Actively avoids cleaning the bathroom. Leaves her dishes in the sink. You haven't seen her shower in four days.

8. Erica

Normal. Quiet. Wants to be a high school English teacher.

9. Erika

Wild. Emotionally distraught always. Is always hosting the pre-game. Never comes home with all of the clothes she left wearing.

10. Sarah

"Definitely should have got into Harvard, but I ended up here instead." Too into trying to get a 4.0 to pay attention to you.

11. Julia

Studies music performance. Screams expletives at her keyboard. Cannot play the trumpet, but still tries really hard.

12. Hannah

So tall she almost hits her head on the doorways. Plays basketball. Raps to old Kanye in the shower.

13. Jenny

Should not be allowed to go out. Goes out every weekend anyway. Throws up in your bathtub and doesn't always address it in the morning.

14. Heather

Stressing about her internship. Is currently failing all of her classes. Will somehow still get a 3.5 GPA this semester.

15. Grace

You never see her, only the hairballs she leaves all around your place.

16. Emma

Only has guy friends because "it's easier." Guy friends who leave empty beer cans out after every sporting event on TV.

17. Caitlyn

Has a 4.0 as a biology major. Is going to med school. Sterilizes her room, the bathroom and the kitchen sink every four hours.

18. Sam

Always has a paper about feminism to write. Rosie the Riveter poster in her room.

19. Alex

Is probably dating her boss. Has straight Ds in all her classes.

20. Taylor

Is somehow always home when you're home. You know nothing about her other than where she's from.

21. Alyssa

Trying to become the next big YouTuber. Has lighting equipment all over the place. You constantly hear the phrase, "Hey guys, welcome to my channel!" She squealed because yesterday she hit 25 subscribers.

22. Jesse

Is probably plotting your murder. Lurks around like a cat.

Cover Image Credit: Morgan Yates//YouTube

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To The High School Class Of 2018, Brace Yourself For Some Cliché Advice

Every graduate will hear these sayings at least once, or a million, times.
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Class of 2018:

It is here. You are leaving high school, and you’re never ever looking back, right? Well, you have to make it through graduation first.

A year ago, I was right where you are now — not-so-patiently waiting for the “big day” of grabbing my diploma and my independence. Along the way, I encountered countless people who wanted to give me advice. You will too. As people constantly pour congratulations over your head like a big jug of Gatorade after the Super Bowl, you’ll hear a few cliché phrases over and over (and over and over and over).

Everyone will tell you, “These are not the best days of your life.” Now, this is true — you will make new memories and have those “best days of your life” that adults always tell you about. But it’s ok to be sad. I worried that missing some parts of high school was unhealthy. News flash: It’s not. And don’t let anyone tell you otherwise. High school is all you have known to this point and these are your only (therefore, your best) memories.

“Live it up,” they say. “You’ll never get these moments back.” True. However, some people hate high school and sprint out the door the minute they grab that diploma. If this is you, you’ll find your place somewhere else. Thank goodness for the incredibly absurd clubs in college — join the Quidditch team, the hammocking club or the esports clan.

“Keep in touch!” As hard as you may try, it is impossible to keep in touch with everyone from high school. There will be friends that you speak to every day, but there will be many, many more that you no longer talk to at all. So when the girl that sat next to you in chemistry tells you she will call, don’t take it personally when you hear nothing out of her until your distant high school reunion.

“Go forth and make your mark on the world,” says every graduation speaker. Ever. This one is so overused that I just cannot express my confusion over why people still say it. Side note: If you are speaking at graduation, and you have this written in your speech, cross it out. You’ll thank me later.

Here’s a bonus for all the graduates still dating their high school sweethearts: There’s nothing wrong with staying with your high school love, no matter how many times people say, “No one marries the person they date in high school.” That said, there’s also nothing wrong with you if your high school relationship fizzles.

And finally, “Today marks the first day of the rest of your life.” HA! Every day is the first day of the rest of your life, right?

High school culminates on this one final day where all the graduates say goodbye to their friends and the parents and grandparents wish luck upon their little babies. Everyone has their piece to say. Here's my non-cliché advice: do what you want and spend time with the people you love. It doesn't get any better than that.

Cover Image Credit: Maddie Toole

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