i surrender

I quit. Throw in the towel. Admit defeat. Acquiesce.

Yesterday I opened this magazine, which had just arrived in the mail.

Martha Stewart Living-front

I thumbed through the first few pages and stopped on page 8, stunned and appalled.

Martha Stewart - editor:covered

Can you read the caption? It says: “Martha and I at the site of many photo shoots….” This was written by the editor in chief of a magazine with a circulation of 2,070,000! Wouldn’t you think someone on his editorial staff would catch such a blatant mistake before it went to press?

Maybe I should give him the benefit of the doubt. Since the caption isn’t a complete sentence, some words are implied. Normally implied would be “(This is a picture of) Martha and I…” or “Here stand Martha and I,” which would make “I” incorrect. So maybe I should assume the implied words would be “Martha and I (are standing) at the site of many photo shoots…” and not get all riled up over nothing.

So I surrender, because in the big picture it doesn’t really matter. The “Martha and I”ers have won. I don’t want to spend the rest of my life appalled over something so insignificant. Besides, there are bigger fish to fry: bring/take, good/well, which/that, eager/anxious, older/oldest, further/farther, luminary/luminaria, and those dang misplaced (or wrong-directioned) apostrophes.

Yes, I’m a grammar grump. Don’t get me started. But I’m all smiles on the inside.

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4 Responses to i surrender

  1. Davida says:

    I think, but am not certain, that “here stand Martha and I” is correct, as “Martha and I” are the subject of the sentence.

    Also please add lay/lie to your crusade.

  2. LizW says:

    Ugh. Hate that!

  3. Craig MacDonald says:

    I fear a worse scenario – an editorial meeting where they said, “Yeah, this is wrong but if we write it correctly everyone will think we messed up. So even though we know better we’ll surrender to common usage.” Once we’ve crossed that bridge we truly are beyond hope.

  4. Ridgely says:

    We should not be surprised. Proper grammar is no longer taught in schools; the teaching of grammar went the way of the woolly mammoth when “whole language” took over in the 1970’s-80’s. Students are supposed to “learn” grammar by osmosis through reading. Good luck with that since kids all have their heads buried in their “smart” phones. Smart….I think not!

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