Thursday, September 22, 2011

A day in a writer's life...

Since publishing my first novel way back in 1997, my friends claim that they have spotted a genuine “writer’s peeve” in me  And they may be right…
When is the last time you bought a scarf?  Okay, maybe you bought more than one – anyway, is that why a very nice Atlanta boutique recently posted signage offering lovely scarfs for sale?  Maybe a lot of people see nothing wrong with that, but the ghost of my third grade teacher cringed at the sight of that sign and I felt her do it, deep in my heart.  As a writer, I felt a determined need to stand up for my language. Okay, maybe it was a hair over the top, but I felt a need to locate management and offer a flash English lesson.  And after the fact, I probably should have just bought the scarfs and left the store.
But, no, I found the manager and explained that the plural of scarf is scarves, not scarfs.  Then I explained why (and then we had to talk about leaves vs. leafs, and the difference between deer, deers, and dear).  Do you know that the woman told me that she’d heard that, but she didn’t see why it mattered?  When I suggested that if it didn’t matter, perhaps there was no need for a sign, she seemed offended because a store needed signs.
I had a headache.
I couldn't help thinking about the consequences of writing a book that was as grammatically and syntactically tilted as that sign (oh, and there were others, like the sign for the Lady's room...).  So, long story short, I finally gave up on the conversation because we clearly did not speak the same language.  I left the scarfs in the boutique and went across the street to another store where scarves were being sold for .20% off.
.20%.  Really.

Guess I’m just a glutton for punishment… but at least the scarves are pretty.

No comments:

Post a Comment