You're Your Best Critic - 11/06/13
From that title, most of you will think this blog is about self improvement and self analysis. It's not. This is just a simple blog about two words that I see misused almost daily. Call it grammar 101. Forgive me, I'm a little bit of a word nazi at times.
Last week, I got an email from a media PR person. I had sent her an email thanking her for helping us get some pictures we needed for a news story. She wrote back and the note ended like this:
Your welcome. Thanks for spreading the word. Certainly, we all make mistakes from time to time. This one's just real easy to fix though. Your is a possessive pronoun. You're means you are. The latter is a contraction, but you don't even have to know all that gobbilly gook .
The easiest way I explain it to my kids is if you're using your, you should be able to replace your with my. If it doesn't fit, it's the other one. Here's an example: Go get your hat. Go get my hat would also work. However, if the sentence was: You're going to get my hat. My can not replace you're because you're means you are.
Another quick test is to sound out you are in the sentence. If you are sounds weird, then use your. Example: Go get you're hat. Sound out you are... that doesn't fit, switch it to your. Done.
I have a dear friend, who's a social media mega star. He helps famous folk maximize their social media reach. I love his tweets because they're always encouraging, like this one: "It doesn't do any good to make it to the top of a hill... if your alone." Oops...
I tweeted him back, as you see in the picture, and he promptly tweeted me back titling me his spelling accountability partner. I guess there are worse things I could be called. I never was good at math, so I'll take it.... the word girl.
It's really ironic. A lot of the denigration of the English language can be blamed on social media. Because of it, we're communicating more--- but we're shortening words to the point we're forgetting how they're really spelled. Maybe we never completely grasped it in the first place. In that case, we're not getting the real practice in long form that we need to work out the kinks. This hybrid language even has a name now. It's called techspeak.
Just remember, when you're writing your next text, email or tweet, your friends will be watching how you're spelling you're and your. You're smart, so choose your words wisely and your sentences will shine no matter what you're writing.
Now, I need to find me a math accountability partner. My shortcoming. ;)