This is my secret passion. Are you ready?
It’s grammar. I admit it. I am a grammar nerd. I’m annoyed when I read badly constructed sentences, I grit my teeth over misspellings, and I’m on the email list of the Chicago Manual of Style. Now, laugh if you must, but words are what make the world go round (God spoke all things into being, remember?), and I like talking about them.
Today’s topic: vowels. Why do people hate them?
At my place of employment, we serve low-income mothers by providing baby supplies. In the normal course of service, I ask the new earthling’s name. Today’s winning answer: “J’siah.” Last week’s winner was “Z’nya,” although I confess that I’m at a bit of a loss to assign a vowel to that apostrophe. Perhaps an “a” would do the trick?
And replacing vowels with apostrophes is hardly the only atrocity committed upon them. Daily, I hear vowels tortured into new and terrible shapes and sizes, elongating them past the point of recognition. “Dog” is one syllable, not two. Same with “can.”
Sometimes I listen to NPR just to hear the vowels and consonants ring out pure and crisp. Local color is not to be disdained, but thank goodness for General American.