PUTTING an apostrophe in the right place is important, but some grammatical rules are too obscure to care about. Here are five that only hair-splitting twats call you out on.
According to language purists, putting an adverb between ‘to’ and a verb is a big no-no, even though everyone does it and it’s totally normal. If you’re a lawyer or writing a contract it might result in a costly ambiguity, but you’re not, so feel free to drop them into conversations and watch pedants squirm.
Who vs whom
‘Whom’ sounds so arse-achingly pretentious that it needs to be phased out of the English language as soon as possible. In fact the only time anyone ever says ‘whom’ is when finicky dickheads point out a mistake in your sentence construction. Let it go the way of the dinosaurs and we’ll all be much happier.
Gravely important to some, pathetically dull to normal people. Just like split infinitives, the presence or absence of an Oxford comma can lead to a minor level of confusion, but only if you’re a bit thick and can’t piece together the general gist of a sentence. Plus it’s named after Oxford University Press, which gives it an added wanky air.
Ending sentences with prepositions
There’s debate as to whether ending a sentence with a preposition is an error or just bad form, which means it probably isn’t worth dwelling on. For example, the last sentence just ended with a preposition and you probably didn’t have a rage-induced heart attack. If you did, call an ambulance to get your head checked.
Fewer and less
Drop the wrong one into conversation and you won’t be able to finish your sentence without being corrected. Knowing that ‘fewer’ applies to countable objects and ‘less’ is used for things you can’t count is straightforward enough, but we’ve all got busy lives and this is a low priority. If you use the right one all the time you are not the superior person you think you are.