Wednesday, July 08, 2009

Thoughts for Grammar

The dog wagged it is tail. How many times have I thought this phrase? Hundreds. Thousands, maybe. (I've always been terrible with estimating numbers. Are there 80? 140? Or 200 people in this room? I couldn't tell you..) I'm sure you think it's an odd phrase. It isn't even grammatically correct. Well, it's all thanks to.. Mrs. Miracle. Or Mrs. Ferrill. Or Mrs. Reid. I don't remember when I was taught this life saving little reminder.

Once I learned my left and right, I knew the difference with little difficulty. I'm not one of those people you still see, extending their thumbs and pointer fingers to see which side shapes an 'L.' In fact, I never used that trick. I knew I was left-handed, so if the side in debate was on the side with the hand I wrote with, it was the left side. Logically.  And so I never had a hesitation in my left and right differentiation. Back to the point: although I had no difficulty with right v left, I did with it's v its. Until a brilliant teacher taught her class a brilliant trick.

Unlike many cases with the 's, the word 'it' does not get an apostrophe s when used possessively. The apostrophe s is, instead, used for the contraction: it is becomes it's. So, when looking at the phrase, The dog wagged it is tail, we see it is incorrect and, therefore, does not get the apostrophe s. So that phrase would be The dog wagged its tail. If we look at a phrase like I like the sun because it is hot, we see it is correct and, therefore, receives the apostrophe s. This phrase becomes I like the sun because it's hot.

Well, I can't really say why I decided to write this, let alone post it. Maybe I just wanted you to see one more extremely weird thing that makes Morgan Morgan.


Tara said...

Lol - you crack me up! By the way, my kids loved the hamburger bed picture and they make me look it up to show it to them on a regular basis. Since we don't eat meat, I don't think they really understand what it is, so they keep calling it the sandwich bed.
I hope things are going well and that you are having a great summer!

cait said...

morgan--you are a really good writer! maybe you can give me some pointers so that my blog is more exciting to read. : )

ps: i love you!

(also--remember how we saw "PS I Love You" and ate pudding on the rice? how could that place have closed?!?!?!?!)