n’t and other Contractions

The title really isn’t a mistake … it’s an apology to Jewel and John.

In yesterday’s post I commented on the Thai food we had at lunch, indicating that “we were disappointed with the food …”, omitting the contractional modifier “n’t” to one critical adverb which totally changed the meaning.

It has been corrected to indicated our real sentiments.

It was great food.

I guess I will have to be a lot more careful with my use of …n’t, …’s, …’ll, …n’t’ve. Perhaps I should omit them from my vocabulary completely. After all, the intent is for contractions to serve as a sort of shorthand, but they really don’t save much time at all. “n’t” means not, of course, but it only adds one extra keystroke, the space.

The danger in eliminating contractions, however, is I fear it will cause my efforts to sound a bit uppity. Grammatically correct maybe, but uppity. It isn’t how I talk, and it slows me down when I must pause to convert a natural contractional situation into a grammatically correct one. Most of the time that is a serious challenge for me because, typically, I am not overly concerned with that aspect of writing.

Grammar has its place, of course … right between “gramma” and “gramme” in someone’s dictionary. I trust that everyone will understand that the apostrophe “s” used in this paragraphs obviously means that the ‘dictionary’ in question belongs to an unnamed someone who uses only one zill, hates Chevys, and is overly fond of the color International Orange. That’s really a color.

I think I’ll leave it right there.

Sorry, Jewel & John, if you took the original version at face value.

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