Friday, August 29, 2008

It's like anonymous blog comments, but in real life!


This little grammar war has been taking place on the walls of our department corridor this week. There is much speculation about who wrote the typed response—it looks like it must have been a faculty member, but no one is admitting to it. (That could be because of the words "pedantic" and "prick" that other faculty members have been bandying around ever since it went up.)

It's especially rude given that the original sign-writer is also a member of the department, and therefore the anonymous response is by one of her colleagues.

I just can't believed they cared about it this much. Whew!

(I've also been amused at the number of students I've seen taking photos of the sign. Some even admitted they are putting it on Facebook or on their blogs.)

6 Comments:

canuck_grad said...

For those of us who are native English speakers but not so knowledgeable, can you explain the difference? I would have said "Now for sale". I think I'd use "on sale" if they were marked down from a higher price.

StyleyGeek said...

I agree with you, Canuck_Grad. For me, if there's any difference at all, it is the mark-down "on sale" vs less specific "for sale". Obviously whoever wrote the sign disagrees. That's what makes it totally weird - that most native English speakers would also either say "for sale" themselves, or wouldn't think twice if they saw it.

Anonymous said...

In the UK we might use either but "for sale" is more common. In the US I notice that "on sale" seems to mean a marked-down price - but not here. So from my perspective the typist is not just pedantic and rude, but takes a narrow view of who "native" English speakers might be ... what fun! Do let us know if the pedant is unmasked...

Jana said...

It wouldn't be ScaryLecturer, would it?

Stewiee said...

You should add another note to correct the final sentence of the typed response. Ending a sentence in a preposition. Sheesh.

StyleyGeek said...

No, not ScaryLecturer. For all his faults, he is not a prescriptivist (nor energetic enough to bother typing up that sort of screed).