Welcome to my first blog post.

The blog is where I intend to explore topics that are important to me as a copywriter – words, grammar, phrases, punctuation etc. They are things I notice every day in spoken and written English. I hope you find the topics I choose interesting. 

I notice things, I can’t help myself! Someone says off, when they mean from; they say due to, when they mean owing to. People shorten words like beautifully to beautiful. They make up words like flavourful, when they should say full of flavour. 

I suppose my interest in language, both written and spoken, stems from my curiosity about people and the world around us. What some people would call my pedantic obsession with grammar dates back to a time when we learned grammar in school. And, not only in English, but in French, German and Latin as well! 

I wasn’t sure about using this first blog post to moan about the decline of using the correct grammar, BUT…

Take pity on me when I tell you that I find it extremely difficult to write a text message without the correct grammar! I know what you are thinking, I am the only person left who thinks this way. But sometimes, odd phrases are frequently used, and I wonder how it all started?

Off of?

For example, who was the first person to utter the phrase “off of“? It is not only grammatically incorrect, but it sounds ugly when you say it, too. For that matter it looks ugly when written down. When I hear someone saying that their dog “jumped off of the couch”, it makes me cringe. There is absolutely no need for the ‘of’ in this sentence? “The dog jumped off the couch”, is perfectly acceptable. Or, “the dog jumped down from the couch”. I have also heard the expression, ‘borrowing off of‘ someone, have you? My question is, ‘isn’t it easier to just say from‘?

I would be intrigued to know the definitive answer to my question, but my guess would be that this whole “off of” phenomenon originally started when someone made a typing error or shortened the phrase on their social media account, and it went viral from there!

Click here to read my post about the decline of the adverb.