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Word Crimes

Time to learn your homophones is past due / Learn to diagram a sentence too / Always say “to whom” / Don’t ever say “to who”…

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My chum Rick Curl just sent me a link to this video by “Weird Al” Yankovic. As you are doubtless aware, “Weird Al” — who was born in 1959, which makes him two years younger than your humble narrator — is best known for his humorous songs that make light of pop culture and often parody specific songs by contemporary musical acts.  
Of course, the reason Rick sent this video to me is that it’s all about grammar and I’m a writer. Maybe Rick is trying to tell me something. Be that as it may, as with all of “Weird Al”’s work, this is really very clever. I couldn’t help myself, I had an urge to read up on “Weird Al,” so I bounced over to the “Weird Al” Wikipedia page where I discovered that he started playing the accordion the day before his seventh birthday. It appears a door-to-door salesman offered a choice of accordion or guitar lessons for “Weird Al” at a local music school. According to “Weird Al,” his parents “chose the accordion over the guitar because “they figured there should be at least one more accordion-playing Yankovic in the world” (they were referring to Frankie Yankovic to whom “Weird Al” is not related). Additionally, “Weird Al” says that another reason his parents chose the accordion was because “they were convinced it would revolutionize rock.” Now I wish I could have grown up near “Weird Al” and met his parents. How about you? Do you have a “Weird Al” favorite you’d care to share?

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Aubrey Kagan

I was always partial to to “Foil” especially the surprise ending on the video.

But I just found “The Saga Begins” which I also enjoyed

Charles Pfeil

An upper-class woman from Boston was visiting a friend in Alabama. As she drove north from Birmingham Airport, she stopped at a small convenience store to pick up a snack. At the counter, the cashier noticed her unusual manner and asked, “Where are you from?” She said, “Where I come from, we don’t end our sentences with a preposition.” The cashier replied, “Ok, where are you from bitch?”

Charles Pfeil

In the 4th grade, I flunked English and was forced to go to summer school. The class was English Grammar. I spent the whole time trying to figure out what grammar meant. It didn’t help me much. When I was a senior in high school, a friend of mine gave me a thesaurus as a graduation present. Although I had improved my grammar slightly, apparently he thought I still needed some education. I felt it was a weird present, but I started reading through it.
My life was changed and I became one of those people who must find the best words to express myself. That was 50 years ago and I am still a synonym hunter.

Rick Curl

In the “Word Crimes” video you’ll see a “Care-O’-Meter”. I just found some information about it. From the weirdal.fandom.com website:

  • The Care-o-meter has a certification sticker from the Division of Measurement Standards, a branch of the California Department of Food and Agriculture, where illustrator of the music video, Jarrett Heather, was employed full-time as a programmer analyst while creating this video on nights and weekends.
  • The Care-O-Meter is manufactured by J. M. Heather Enterprises, Inc., and obvious reference to animator Jarrett Heather.

…..Just thought you’d like to know……….

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