So, why am I showing you this blurry image of — well, it’s palm fronds, I think. They form the roof of the (teeth gritted) “Shave Ice” concession at the campground.
We walk by it nearly every time we walk there. And I do grit my teeth every time I see the sign. “Shave Ice” and “Ice Tea.” I have to work hard to resist my very prescriptive linguistic impulses. I guess I feel the blurry image matches the blurry grammatical lines that are constantly being erased. The past participle, folks! Even if you don’t know the term, you know the verb form when used as an adjective. “Shaved” and “Iced.” Sigh.
It goes along with “10 items or less” in the grocery line. (“Less what?” I constantly ask myself. The island of Gibraltar has a Safeway that cautions “10 items or fewer.” It’s British! Which is a whole nother issue…)
And also the “quotation marks” around things that shouldn’t have them. And the sentences like “She gave it to her and I!” It goes on and on. Oh well, I’m hopeless. Ain’t I?!