Thursday, September 01, 2005

jfw contest!: grammarians, diagram this sentence!

Win one of the coveted JFW virtual kewpie dolls! A friend who is a faculty member in the Department of Unnamedology at Unnamed University received the following e-mail from a student regarding their first assignment (which was to be e-mailed to the professor):
im a student in your monday 3:20-4:10 class it took a little long to 
send you the email because ive been working from 4:00pm-1:00am back home
by [City],[State] so i leave around 2:oopm and dont get back until around
3:30am sorry but that day i had to leave right after since class ended at
4:oo i tried to send the email quickly bfore i left but for some reason i
could not get in i called the information desk and explained the problem
i was having they told me it was that since everybody new is coming in
then that vwould slow up the internet for like a week since they are
probally trying to get the schedules so i called the student teachers
number and left a message explaining the same thing like that you didnt
think i donyt care about my grades so again im sorry and thanks.
(Entranced entrants: see standard sentence diagramming conventions here.)

19 comments:

Anonymous said...

i too is a college student altho a nontraditional one i learnt a long time ago how to write and all so how to address someone who will eventually give me a grade and personally i am apauled at how far standards have slid since i first went to high school back when there was dinasores.
~paulette

Absolut said...

I think its like so not cool that you would be makin fun of this studnt whose clearly doin whatever best he can to like meat the recuirements for this teachr who is like probly way too strict anyway and its just not fair to start sending all this around the internet where like anybody can just like comment and make fun and like i don't undstand how this is going to help the teachr or the studnt so i think the only person winnin here will b the 1 who wins the contest but how can you win a contest makin fun of someone becaus it just seems really wrong and anyway like just cos someone like put no period in a sentense does not mean that there is no period in that sentense and what does grammarian mean anyway?

Tom Volscho said...

Hey, at least he follows ethical guidelines--removing all identifying information. I am in the middle of the CITIPROGRAM IRB modules! Ugh!!! Why else would I comment on such?

the jeff said...

I'll need proof of the JFW kewpie doll first.

Kim said...

I came across this post on a Chronicle forum (sorry, don't know the original source)...

"I cdnuolt blveiee taht I cluod aulaclty uesdnatnrd waht I was rdanieg. The phaonmneal pweor of the hmuan mnid.

Aoccdrnig to rscheearch taem at Cmabrigde Uinervtisy, it deosn't mttaer in waht oredr the ltteers in a wrod are, the olny iprmoatnt tihng is taht the frist and lsat ltteer be in the rghit pclae. The rset can be a taotl mses and you can sitll raed it wouthit a porbelm.

Tihs is bcuseae the huamn mnid deos not raed ervey lteter by istlef, but the wrod as a wlohe. Such a cdonition is arppoiately cllaed Typoglycemia :)-

Amzanig huh? Yaeh and yuo awlyas thought slpeling was ipmorantt."

Kim said...

What I meant to say about the above...

At least to my eye, the text with the middle-letters jumbled is easier to read than the text with better spelling but no punctuation.

I wonder how many of the letters in the middle can be incorrect letters -- i.e., they don't belong at all in the word -- before just knowing the first and last letters is insufficient. Or whether the length of the word has to be correct. (Yes, I could probably find answers by looking for the original article ... but that would entail too much procrastination.

Anonymous said...

ooooh! isn't it funny when highly educated people make fun of those with less education?!?!? yay!

jeremy said...

Anon 7:58am: While I aways appreciate a smugly-self-satisfied-I'm-a-good-liberal-and-the-rest-of-you-are-elitist-and-bad commenter, it annoys me when people equate low education with low conscientiousness. My mother is not a high school graduate, for example, but I can assure you that she has every sense (and, incidentally instilled this in her son before he set foot on a college campus) that one should approach professional interactions (which is what an e-mail to one's professor is) with something more serious than the casual-sloppy-rambliness that I've seen from some students, including those of far more advantaged backgrounds. I suspect the author of this e-mail knows full well what an apostrophe is, for instance, as well as what capital letters are, and their not deploying them should not be just simply chalked up to their education.

jeremy said...

above: aways = always, obviously

Anonymous said...

i'd guess it has less to do with formal education, than with the proliferation of IM and text-messaging technologies (inappropriately spilling over into more formal/professional contexts). wow, that sounded very tooly and academic. oh well.

Anonymous said...

jeremy,

some of this is true. i don't know what capital letters are for and i am highly educated. good point.

i don't really think that your original post makes fun of this kid as much as some of the subsequent posts that use "alternative" spellings.

anon, 7:58

Anonymous said...

ha - who cares about periods and grammar when we're slowly moving towards the international language of symbols! ;-)

jeremy said...

Just to be clear, I don't think any of the earlier comments were out of any kind of line either. I mean, noting foibles in student writing is a pretty timehonored and benign academic tradition, and anonymous writing samples seems benignest of the benign. It's hardly like we're all hanging out in the teacher's lounge making fun of the weird kid from a poor family and a "Vote For Pedro" T-Shirt.

Anonymous said...

This whole thing is pathetic ...

jeremy said...

(Hmm, I wonder if the last comment was about my post, this comment thread, or my blog in general. It wouldn't be the first time the p-word had been used to describe this blog generally.)

Rhymes With Scrabble said...

I gotta say, I'm with Nina, Jeremy: why do you continue to allow craven anonymous commenting?

sep said...

ah! the "p" word again, and I don't mean "pathethic" but "professional." i think your first mistaken assumption on this is that an email from a student to a professor (who holds so much power over them) is a "professional interaction." Most, if not all, students would disagree on this. Exams, papers, face-to-face meetings, are or should be construed as "professional interactions" but email, that's a whole other animal. Otherwise, I agree with your comment about conscientiousness, as a member of the working-class I too, was raised with an (inflated?) sense of conscientiousness.

Agee said...

I once had a student email me the following: "I missed class on Monday because I was home hanging out with my family. I just wanted you to know I wasn't skipping class."

Can't remember whether he used punctuation...

Anonymous said...

No, not the blog — though this week's events are so dreadful, grammar isn't right up there on top. anon 12.02 PM