World’s Strangest

Your source for the strangest things around!

I Am The Very Model of an Amateur Grammarian

Tom Freeman of The Stroppy Editor took the Major-General’s Song from the Pirates of Penzance by Gilbert and Sullivan and adapted it to suit the modern swashbuckling world of grammar nazism: I am the [...]

Software Company CEO: "I Won’t Hire People Who Use Poor Grammar."

Kyle Wiens, the CEO of a software development company, gives an English grammar test to prospective employees. Here’s why: If it takes someone more than 20 years to notice how to properly use “it’s,” then that’s not a learning curve I’m comfortable with. So, even in this hyper-competitive market, I will pass on a great programmer who cannot write. Grammar [...]

Fumblerules of Grammar

Writer William Safire collected contradictory grammar rules from various sources and published 36 of them in his New York Times column in 1979. Eighteen more were added when he published the 2002 book Fumblerules: A Lighthearted Guide to Grammar and Good Usage. Here’s a sample: 8. Do not put statements in the negative form. 9. Verbs has [...]

Grammar Blogs is holding a contest to determine the Best Grammar Blog of 2011. How many grammar blogs could there be? More than you think …there are 75 different blogs in the running! Although you shouldn’t vote for blogs you haven’t visited, there are links for each entered grammar blog so you can check them out. [...]

Internet Access CAPTCHAs

I’ve always advocated that you don’t have to be intelligent to have rights, but this idea from Defective Yeti has wondrous, if perverse, appeal. What if you had to prove that you had a grasp of basic grammar before you could log on to the internet? You’ll find a rotation of these at the site, [...]

Books That Took Forever to Finish

On Fridays, I post a series of unrelated questions meant to spark conversation in the comments. Answer one, answer all, respond to someone else’s reply, whatever you want. On to this week’s topics of discussion… 1. Of all the books you’ve ever finished, which one took the longest to read? Why’d you keep putting it down? [...]

"We Are The World. We Are The Linguists."

YouTube link. Professors and students at Budapest’s ELTE-MTA Theoretical Linguistics Programme celebrate the 20th anniversary of their department with a cover of “We Are The World.” There comes a time When we heed a certain call, When linguists must come together as one. There are people speaking, They bind and c-command; It’s grammar, the greatest gift of all. We can’t go on Pretending day [...]

Stephen Fry on Grammar Nazis

(Video Link) You do seek out opportunities to point out the grammatical errors of other people? If so, Stephen Fry holds you in contempt. He argues that (1) the subjective and changing nature of language prevents definitive grammatical forms and (2) you’re a pretentious pedant. via Nerdcore Previously on Neatorama: Grammar Nazi Punctuation Hero or Vandalizing Grammar Nazi

Things We Say Wrong

(YouTube link) OK now, how many grammar mistakes can you spot in this video? I am always on my kids’ backs about running their words together or using words like “tooken.” However, I’ve also learned that if you go on the internet and tell people they are doing something wrong (or “incorrectly,” as this should be), [...]