Whom is Stupid

English is changing. Constantly morphing. Whether you want it to or not.

I was telling my college composition class today that I firmly believe that the word “whom” will be completely gone from standard American English within 50 years. Grammar rules are in place, because of how we talk- not the other way around. The rules were written to explain how we speak. If we stop speaking in a certain way or words fall out of use, the rule will be defunct. I want to start a Kickstarter to defunt (yes, I just made that adjective a verb, because I do what I want!)  the word “whom”. Is that possible? Will you donate 5 bucks to that cause? If so, go to www.whomisstupid.com. Just kidding. Don’t click on that link; it’ll probably give you a virus.

Let’s talk about verb tenses, such as the verb “to help”. The tenses actually used to be help , holp, holpen. For realz. They have know become regular- help, helped, helped. I think some other irregular verbs are moving that way as well, such as drunk and swum. Have you ever heard someone say, “I have swum in the ocean many times.”? Uh, no. They say swumpt. Just kidding. But swum sounds just as silly to me. What about brung or thunk? The less often a word is said, the more likely it is to change. That’s why go, went, and gone are probably around to stay I’m afraid.

Next on my list is the word “well”.

“How are you doing today?”

“I’m well. How about you?”

No. All kinds of no. Yes, I am an English teacher, but I feel so stuffy when I say I am well. I feel like a 19th century woman carrying a parasol when I say it. This is another rule that I give a good 20 years before it falls to the way side. Everyone always says, “I’m good.” “Things are good.” Except me, because I only reply with, “Things are poppin!” Mostly to my boss. Just kidding. He gets a “well” since he has a PhD in English. And he’s my boss. But really, things are poppin!

There are even some capitalization and punctuation rules that are changing. People argue over the oxford comma all the time for example. Did you know that the Chicago Manual now says not to write U.S. when talking about the United States of America. It is now just US with no periods. The word “website” and other technological words used to require capitalization and now don’t.

Some grammar gurus get angry for what they view as grammar infractions, but really, they just need to accept that English grammar is fluid and ever-changing, and it always will be. And, in my opinion, they also need to think about incorporating the word swumpt into their vocabulary. I better hurry and go get a copyright on that.

 

funny grammar

Image from onehorseshy.com

 

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7 thoughts on “Whom is Stupid

  1. OOo there are so many ways we speak, but are not grammatically correct. My b/f’s most hated is the misuse of “random”. And I think by now, everyone has finally caught on to “I couldn’t care less.” I’d say “whom” will fall out faster than 50 years. And I’m not sure if MS Word will be able to stay abreast with all the changes in the English dictionary. I feel like new words (and rules) are being created and formulated faster than ever before.

    BTW, I say “well” 🙂 in fact I rarely say “good”.

  2. Found your blog via…a long list of other blogs I was looking at, but glad I reached here! I think you’re right about how grammar continually evolves (regardless of former rules).
    I get annoyed of rules, just because they’re always different. Chicago vs MLA, British vs American (both spelling and grammatical idiosyncrasies)…
    I am generally pro the Oxford comma, because I think it’s stupid to *not* use it when it could clearly make the sentence more understandable. (What’s that old example… “We invited the strippers, JFK and Stalin.” vs “We invited the strippers, JFK and Stalin.”
    I thinkーwhich I believe is along the lines of what you’re sayingーpeople need to calm down and be more flexible, because the rules are there to help us figure out what makes something easier to communicate with each other.
    Sorry, this ended up a bit long! (Incidentally, I think “swumpt” is a great word! Look forward to seeing more of it ;))

    • Glad you found me! I hate how there are so many different sets of rules and also preferences. I have seen that comma example complete with a picture. It was disturbing yet hilarious! Thanks so much for stopping by and commenting. 🙂

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