Weird Al Yankovic’s song “Word Crimes” combines grammar with music, and it’s fun to listen to.

But linguists are pointing out that these word crimes are not so felonious after all.

Linguist Daniel Midgley continues the investigation on this episode of Talk the Talk.

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Promo with Damian Smith

Show notes

Blogger fired from language school over ‘homophonia’

Was someone really fired for talking about a ‘pedagogical approach’? The story is out there, but I have doubts.

Who or whom?

Let’s point out that the popularity of some who/whom constructions has reversed.

Yes, some people use quotation marks for “emphasis”. Here’s the “Blog” of “Unnecessary” Quotation Marks

But really, no one has trouble with the ambiguity of using punctuation marks for more than one thing.

Grammar Girl explains why it’s okay to say you’re “doing good.”

Tracy Morgan on 30 Rock: “Superman does good — you’re doing well!”

Why Saying ‘I’m Good’ Is Correct, And Anyone Who Says Otherwise Is A Fool

The pupil said, “Oh, I’m doing good!” The teacher said, “You shouldn’t say that — you should say, ‘I am doing well,’ ” to which the student replied, “Oh, no. I ain’t doing that good!”

Irony has had many definitions over the years.

Bongo Bongo: Literally is okay as an intensifier

Grammar Girl again, on split infinitives.

“Weird Al” tweets: “If you thought I didn’t know that I ended “Word Crimes” with a split infinitive… you don’t give me nearly enough credit.”

Spastic and “Word Crimes”

“Weird Al” tweets: “If you thought I didn’t know that “spastic” is considered a highly offensive slur by some people… you’re right, I didn’t.  Deeply sorry.”

David Shariatmadari: “Error is the engine of language change, and today’s mistake could be tomorrow’s vigorously defended norm.”


Twabstinence (plus a lot more)

Tweetus Deletus!

Show tunes

‘Crime’ by Real Estate
from the album Atlas

‘Police and Thieves’ by the Clash
from the album The Clash