Football Burp’s very own Jermaine Pedant enjoys nothing more than strolling back and forth in his professor’s gown, casting scholarly gazes over his fellow professionals’ online scribblings.
Each week, he homes in on a few choice instances of common grammatical failings and raps on them repeatedly with his disciplinary cane until we’ve all jolly well learnt to treat the Queen and her English with the utmost respect. Read on for this week’s lessons…
The Sheffield Wednesday striker, on loan from Queens Park Rangers, was delivering his appraisal of a popular televisual strand…
Tbh I’m not really having xfactor !!!I only like the auditions there are funny
— Jay bothroyd (@jaybothroyd) October 6, 2012
Jermaine Pedant says… As much as I could fill this missive with pedantry-hewn lead, Jay, I choose to focus solely on your frankly bizarre assertion that “there are funny”. Although it may be a broadly encompassing word in some instances, ‘funny’ is itself a singular – the plural ‘funnies’ is usually used in reference to the cartoons page of newspapers – so in theory the correct version would be “there is funny”.
I say “in theory” because “I only like the auditions, there is funny” (notice my insertion of a comma) still reads abysmally. Of course the most likely explanation is that you meant to write “I only like the auditions, they are funny”, although as preferable as this is I would be inclined to opt for a conjunction such as ‘because’ or ‘as’. Why? Permit me to demonstrate:
a) I would use a conjunction, it connects two clauses in a clear and unambiguous manner.
b) I would use a conjunction because it connects two clauses in a clear and unambiguous manner.
I would grudgingly permit a), Jay, but b) should have me smiling contentedly into my after-dinner crossword.
The Swansea City striker was making a bold admission about his recent form…
Agree with the fans I’m not playing well as I should it happens …on a positive note a great come back from the boys
— Danny Graham (@DannyGraham10) October 6, 2012
Jermaine Pedant says… Your on-pitch performances are one thing, Danny, but within the confines of the classroom I should be far more concerned about your academic standards. As I see it, “I’m not playing well as I should it happens” could be a botched version of either of the following:
a) I’m not playing as well as I should be; it happens.
b) I’m not playing as well as I should be, as it happens.
See me after the lesson and we shall discuss where to go from here.
The Wigan Athletic goalkeeper was ruing Leighton Baines’s late equaliser from the penalty spot…
Had a big game against Everton today, a bit upset about the score , could of won the game.. Thanks to all who came and supported #wafc
— Ali Al-Habsi (@AliAlhabsi) October 6, 2012
Jermaine Pedant says… Casting aspersions over one’s professional failings can be a healthy activity as long as it’s conducive to a renewed hunger for self-improvement, but if one allows it to act as a distraction from their day-to-day use of correct grammar then a dual challenge awaits.
Do you know what your mistake could have been here?
The Everton captain was watching El Clásico…
Should of squared that ronaldo!!!!!!!!
— phil neville18 (@fizzer18) October 7, 2012
Jermaine Pedant says… See me, Phillip.
The Leyton Orient winger was feeling lazy…
Won’t be moving of my sofa today super Sunday.. then barcalona vs real Madrid #footballfest
— dean cox (@dean_7cox) October 7, 2012
Jermaine Pedant says… Are you saying, Dean, that there shall not be any moving of your sofa? This would suggest shifting furniture to be a regular activity of yours, in which case I should suggest spending less time engaging in Feng shui and more time contemplating how incorrect distinction between ‘of’ and ‘off’ may drastically alter the meaning of a sentence.
This is crushingly basic stuff, Dean; don’t allow your recent wonder goal to take your eye off the ball, for it would be of no benefit to your studies!
The former Wimbledon, Charlton Athletic and Blackpool midfielder was complimenting an Everton star on his new haircut…
Pienaar has cut of his plaits. Looking fresh now…
— Real jason_ euell (@jasoneuell) October 6, 2012
Jermaine Pedant says… Are any of you even listening? I realise that Wednesdays can be tiresome for whatever reason, but this is all the more reason for a show of character on your part. Jason, see me after the lesson along with Phillip.
The Fulham starlet was multitasking…
watching x factor
— Kerim Frei (@KerimFrei21) October 6, 2012
Jermaine Pedant says… It would appear to me that your primary engagement at that particular moment was the composition of a tweet, and not the sensory intake of said televisual strand.
This may not be a matter of grammar, but pedantry waters all of life’s fields.
The Liverpool starlet was settling down after his side’s disappointing 0-0 home draw with Stoke City…
Dissapoint about the result today. Ready to watch “el clasico” and rest for tomorrow’s game with u’21s vs midlesbrough (or however u write)
— Daniel Pacheco(@dani37pacheco) October 7, 2012
Jermaine Pedant says… …whereas I am disappointed by your neglect of the past participle, young Daniel. However, your near-correct attempt at spelling ‘Middlesbrough’ from memory redeems you on this count. Just don’t do it again!
The Sky Sports pundit was teasing Manchester United midfielder Tom Cleverley over his possibly unintentional goal at Newcastle United on Sunday…
@tomclevz23 Shot or Cross? I want honesty? I’ve gone Cross!!
— G.Neville (@GNev2) October 7, 2012
Jermaine Pedant says… Your presence in the Sky Sports studio may be a breath of fresh air, Gary, but it would be a dereliction of duty on my part not to draw attention to your unnecessary capitalisation of the non-pronouns ‘shot’ and ‘cross’.
If the rampant commercialisation of football has recently overseen the absorption of such on-pitch actions into the unsavoury realm of the brand name, then please accept my apologies.
The former Liverpool, Leeds United and Manchester City striker was presumably wondering who has the edge out of the world’s two best players…
The chicken or the egg= ronaldo and messi?
— Robbie Fowler (@Robbie9Fowler) October 7, 2012
Jermaine Pedant says… While I am unable to resolve the chicken/egg conundrum – the finer points of which I suspect may elude you, Robert – I can confirm that Cristiano is 27 years of age to Lionel’s 25, and therefore came first.
Now I must take my leave, for I have much to do if I’m to force my way back into Tony Pulis’s first team squad in time for the trip to Manchester United. Class dismissed!