I’m happily writing again albeit I’m not getting as much done as I want to but words are being created one at a time and that’s the best anyone can hope for. Today I have submitted two pieces to a publisher which I hope will receive a global audience. More on that when I know if they have been successful.
Round Two of the Whittaker Prize was submitted yesterday and this time I beat the deadline by hours and not minutes as in Round One—a little healthier for my sanity at the very least. My first round entry came in third which was something to be pleased about. It’s a long haul yet and one I may not be able to stick with this year because believe it or not, I’m on the move again sometime in the next month.
Sadly my landlord died, five weeks after I moved in here in February. Unfortunately the house has to be sold and there’s not a lot I can do about that. As I have custody of Plott dog, finding a new home has proved somewhat difficult and for a nation of dog lovers, it certainly doesn’t feel like it. I tried 17 different properties before I found one with a landlord understanding enough to allow me to keep Plott dog. Hopefully, we’ll be settled into our new home by the end of May.
That however, is not what my bit of a rant is about.
I don’t watch much television if I can help it but recently I found myself stopped dead in my tracks by an advert for one of the banks, exhorting people to …”visit us in branch”… Whatever happened to going to the branch? I’m pretty sure when I worked in financial services nobody talked about coming to see Manager ….well maybe there was the occasional “T’Manager” if one were to account for regional speech patterns, but nobody every referred to me as Manager. They may have called me many things but usually it had a definite article attached to it.
I also attend a weekly meeting where the leader of the group constantly talks about people “coming into group.” I find myself wanting leap up and protest loudly at this erosion of the English language, one word at a time or at the very least shake the person warmly by the throat until they comply with my need for grammatical correctness.
What’s happening here?
Teenagers aside, how long can it be before we’ve lost so much of our language that we are communicating in nothing more than a series of monosyllabic grunts?
Another word which has been irritating me of late is “gutted” and when I heard a BBC newsreader use it some weeks ago I was horrified to find it was being used in the context of someone being upset. Where did it come from?
Herring are gutted, Pilchards are gutted; game is gutted but people?
Did we not have enough words in our language already to be able to express the nature of sorrow or disappointment? Is it that we have become so used to the use of excessive superlatives and hyperbole that we find ourselves constantly searching for something more visceral, more Cor! Wow! Zip! Have we dulled our senses so much that we have to communicate in the language of Eastenders and the red-top rags?
I’m not suggesting we should be speaking in the language of the seventeenth century; language is a living thing, as such it does adapt and evolve but surely it doesn’t have to be butchered in the process.
Quite frankly, I’m gutted!