I’m not a grammar freak. I live south of Baltimore, where it’s perfectly acceptable to say, “I’m doing good.” Really, I think I get more odd looks if I say, “I’m doing well.”
I’m also not a perfectionist. I want to put forth the best product I can, but if someone finds a typo in my manuscript, I don’t go looking for razor blades. Everyone makes mistakes.
But lately, I’m seeing a lot of errors on television.
A few months ago, there was the Glee math error. Without making you click on the link, they basically put an equation on a white board that read, “5,000 x .25 = 20,000”
Um, I’m no mathematician, but that’s not correct.
Yesterday morning, I was watching the new CW show, The Secret Circle. Some of the teenagers broke into the school principal’s office to use the computer and hack into student files. When they were reading a specific entry in the school records, the heading read, “Vice Principle’s Notes.”
AUGH. It’s like nails on a chalkboard, isn’t it? I actually had to back up the DVR to make sure my eyes weren’t deceiving me.
Didn’t everyone else learn that “principal” is spelled that way because the principal is supposed to be your pal?
I mentioned a while back that I was jarred by a novel that featured a protagonist ducking into a convenience store in Baltimore to buy a six-pack of beer. In Baltimore, you can’t buy beer in a convenience store. You can’t buy any alcohol of any kind outside a liquor store.
But that’s a minor error based on unfamiliarity of the area, and the average reader isn’t going to notice it, or care.
The errors on Glee and The Secret Circle? Those are huge errors. We’re not talking about something only a stickler or a local would know. We’re not even talking about something that could almost be classified as local dialect or casual speech (“I’m doing good”). We’re talking about basic math. Basic spelling. How many people saw that math problem and thought it looked correct? How many people saw, “Vice Principle’s Notes” and thought it was correct?
Worse, who saw those errors, recognized them, and thought, “Meh, most people won’t notice.”
I know these aren’t isolated incidents. What have you seen? Do these kinds of errors make you crazy?