using proper english

@slickcut (8141)
United States
February 7, 2009 11:51am CST
I have been told by a friend of mine that i do not use proper english..They are not being ugly to me, they just see what i do and the way i say things & they correct me and when they do i see that they are right....Example:If i eat something that i like, i will say "thats good" instead of saying"that is good". thats just one example...Also if someone says i am doing something instead of me saying "I am not doing that" i will say "I ain't doing that"...haha now i am a texan, born in Louisana, so i know i don't always use proper english, but its hard to change...People say i talk country, i really would like to change this but its hard...so also my daughter does the same thing , we have this little country twang...So have you ever been corrected , and if so how do you change that?...
6 people like this
22 responses
@matersfish (6311)
• United States
7 Feb 09
Wow. I don't know what to say here. I'm really not trying to insult your friends, but they sound too overly pretentious for their own good. I work as a writer, so my entire livelihood depends on my ability to use proper English and grammar. I still manage to screw the pooch sometimes; but for the most part, I do well enough to receive a paycheck. "That's good" IS "that is good." "That's" is a contraction and is perfectly acceptable. "Ain't" isn't a word, per the opinions of overly pickly people who still use the Webster's forged from the fires of old-school Britain. However, I ain't going to stop saying ain't, because where I'm from, ain't is universally accepted as English. People like to be right more often than correct. What's the difference? Well, the difference is they would have pointed out that I should have asked, "What IS the difference." And that's the difference. My (your) way is still correct, it's just not "right" per their anal doctrine of society-taught English. My theory still rings true. There are only two types of people in the entire world: writers and editors. Writers just want to write. Editors just want to be right. You stop people from correcting you by pointing out that English - language in general - isn't confined to books. It's a form of communication that human beings "created" (evolved to, more like) and have been changing according to the times and locations. Case in point: Spanish and Italian. The Spanish spoken in Mexico is difference than the Spanish spoken in Spain. The Italian spoken in Tuscany is different than the Italian spoken in Sicily. Maybe you know more about "English" than your friends trying to star on you. Ask them about language as a whole and see how much knowledge they have.
@slickcut (8141)
• United States
7 Feb 09
yeah your right....The reply above yours said my talk is part of who i am...Being born in Lousiana and my folks being cajan, then us coming to Texas i guess i just picked up the english i speak today..Instead of me asking "Are you going with me?" i will say something like "you coming with me" or just you coming?...I don't see any sense in using all the extra words, when you get your point across with less ,...haha..I am not writing a book .so guess i will just let it go....I do notice people laughing when i say something like "Im fixin to go shopping"...
1 person likes this
• United States
7 Feb 09
matersfish is right, the way you say things is just fine. English as a language IS forever changing, the English spoken in the USA differs greatly from the English spoken in England - I personally can barely understand anything that people form England say LOL. Also, even in the US, the language differs form place to place, I am from NY and when I go outside my region, people have a hard time understanding a word I say, even though I tend to use proper grammar.
• United States
7 Feb 09
I heard that ain't was added to the dictonary! Of course I live in the south and it could just be an excuse so they can use it! lol
1 person likes this
@Grandmaof2 (7604)
• Canada
7 Feb 09
I thought that was a bonus of myLot we are our own person here so let yer rip, my friend I will not criticize. I love ya all the way you are and want you all to take me the same way.
2 people like this
@slickcut (8141)
• United States
7 Feb 09
Well thank you grandma of 2 I feel the same way......
1 person likes this
@Jae2619 (1485)
• United States
7 Feb 09
I was orginally from Missouri, and moved to South Carolina almost 10 years ago and I picked up on the southern ways of talking... Instead of saying We are getting ready to leave... I've picked up the word fixin'... We are fixin' to leave, as well as other things. When I head back to my Momma's in Missouri, they all make fun of me because I've picked up this way of talk .. It sometimes bothers me that they think it's funny to pick on me or correct me but I usually just tell them to accept it and say " Us folks see no problem in it, We like the way we talk, deal with it!" And " ain't" is a word. lol... Just tell them that.... The way you talk is part of you, and makes you who you are.
1 person likes this
@slickcut (8141)
• United States
7 Feb 09
Yeah, im always fixin to do something..Haha...I really don't let it bother me..I am who i am and can't help how i talk...Some think its cute , and others gasp i supposs...I just have that twang and cannot help it even though i try , it just comes out...
@Jae2619 (1485)
• United States
7 Feb 09
That's me too... I don't really care either but when it's your family from your home state saying you've lost all your roots, it kinda is a slap... I always have to think, i've got my own roots now, so kiss my grits buddy lol.. I have to laugh when i do say something in front of them and they give me that "huh" look... Also when they come down for a visit it's like a cultrual shock to them, but it always seems they take some of that home with them and before too long they are "fixin'" to do something, or they are giving there children "butt cuttin's"... too funny!
1 person likes this
@slickcut (8141)
• United States
7 Feb 09
Haha
@Polly1 (12650)
• United States
9 Feb 09
I live in Ohio and am sometimes asked if I am from down south. I think you talk (or write) just fine. We all talk the way we talk, who says the way someone else talks is the "right" way. Your not a little kid that needs to be corrected. I say keep talking the way you talk. "Hows them apples?"
1 person likes this
@Canellita (12059)
• United States
1 Mar 09
I live in the deep south and most people think I am from somewhere else. Many who were in school with me say they thought I was from California. Crazy.
@zhuuraan (967)
• United States
8 Feb 09
I've been corrected before, yes, and I absolutely hate it! The way I see it I should be allowed to talk however I want. If I wanna say 'I ain't goanna do that!" Or something, nobody should care. I'm not in English class, I'm not at work or school, or nothing like that. Now, if I were at work or school or something like that, I could understand using proper english to be more professional, and I try not to use much slang in those situations, but in my normal life, I talk however I want to. So now I'm fixin' to end this here. Lol
1 person likes this
@Canellita (12059)
• United States
1 Mar 09
ROFLOL! There is a time and place for everything and as long as people know the difference, right?
@twoey68 (13662)
• United States
20 Feb 09
I usually type the way I talk unless I'm doing a formal paper or letter then I'm more careful about it. I'd say that if ppl have a problem with how you type or talk, let them work it out themselves. As long as ppl can understand me, that's all that matters. [b]**AT PEACE WITHIN** ~~STAND STRONG IN YOUR BELIEFS~~[/b]
1 person likes this
@angelia286 (2029)
• Singapore
8 Feb 09
Haha I think the majority of the world is like that and none of us are really using the real proper English any longer. Not even in England where the Queen's English reigns. Don't you think that proper English is just too long and too pretentious? Well, over here in Singapore, we do not use proper English when we are speaking. In fact almost all of us singaporeans are guilty of using Singlish - which is really just a mixture of English, our own Mother Tongues and a splatter of Chinese dialect here and there when we talk. Luckily for me, speaking improper English (otherwise known as Singlish) is a very common thing here in Singapore, and I get away with it all the time without anybody correcting my English. On the contrary, we would get weird stares from people if we were to use the proper English to communicate with others. Imagine this, excusing oneself from the table: Proper English: I'm sorry. Would you please excuse me for a moment. I need to go to the lavetory. VS Singlish: Go toilet eh! Lol. It's no wonder why all of us use Singlish in our spoken communication.
• Philippines
8 Feb 09
here in our country we have been trained how to speak english the proper way. you know not the slang type or the accent type. but nowadays its the trend, you feel classy and "in" when you speak the accent way. for me, there are no problems how you deliver your words as long as the listeners or audiences understand it.
1 person likes this
• United States
8 Feb 09
I was picked on when I was a teenager. I went on a youth trip and was one of only two southerners. The northerners were always teasing us about our twang and asking us to say things. This is the thing though, I am a southerner (I was born in Tennessee), but I moved around a great deal as a child and many southerners have asked me where I'm from and can't believe it when I tell them. I don't think I have a very heavy accent and can use proper grammer when speaking when I choose, but I think the southern dialect and sayings are fantastic and sound so welcoming and friendly. I don't mind being teased or asked how we say something down here. I just grin and throw on my very best twang. If you really don't like being corected just tell your friends that you don't like being corrected and remind them that all people, even if they don't realize it have speach patterns that are unique to where they came from. If it bothers you a great deal to the point that you feel country then you will have to think about the phrases you choose and the way you say words and focus on your pronunciation....it can be done but it takes practice, when I was taking a conversational spanish class I used a micro tape recorder so I could hear how I sounded and how I pronounced certain words.
1 person likes this
@maximax8 (27048)
7 Feb 09
I live in England and its people have lots of different accents. I can imagine a room of people in it, one from London, one from Birmingham, one from Liverpool, one from Manchester and one from Newcastle. They would all speak differently and it that would be lovely. I think that it would be boring if everyone spoke in the same way. Some people speak informally at home but speak in a business like when on the phone at work. A little country twang sounds superb to me and quite charming. When I came home from a long trip to Australia I sounded as if I was Australian and people told me that. I had to prove my nationality with my passport in one case.
1 person likes this
• China
8 Feb 09
i am a new member,what is the meanding of ain't
• Singapore
3 Mar 09
am not =)
1 person likes this
@Canellita (12059)
• United States
1 Mar 09
Honey chile, no one in the United States uses "proper" English. As a child I really got tired of hearing the words "you talk so proper." While there is a difference between standard, formal and informal English, it's all English and usually people know what you mean. I do admit there are some things people say that drive me a little crazy. Having a standard means people are able to communicate with each other. My grandfather has a pronunciation for some words that can be very confusing. Being a city girl, I don't speak that bayou language but I have learned from others that there are older members of their family who use some of those same words. I am sure it would make an interesting study on dialect and diaspora but there is only so much time in the day. If you really want to clean up your speech look for diction exercises and watch old movies with people like Carey Grant and Audrey Hepburn. People still had some regard for formality and manners back then.
• United States
8 Feb 09
I just tell them it is how I speak, and that they should deal with it. You sound how you sound, and it's alright with me. :-)
@syankee525 (6298)
• United States
8 Feb 09
yea i am told that alot, but to me i look at them well depend who it is, well i tell them i be tell ya to get to hell, this ain't school so ya all get humpy on down there shut ya mouth loll.
• China
8 Feb 09
Hi,slickout, For me sometimes I will make mistakes even myself do not know what my problem really is,that is due to my poor English grammar,anyway ,most of the time I just try my best do not make mistakes ,I have seen your discussions ,actually,I haven't seen any improper english you have used (maybe poor molly can't find that).More often than not I will revise my discussions to check some improper use of the grammar as for the improper words connections maybe poor molly can not find that ;-( hehe ~~
@maean_19 (4663)
• Philippines
8 Feb 09
Based on the examples you have illustrated, I can say that you are actually using the proper English, but you are not speaking in a FORMAL English. Our Mylot friends had explained about contractions and I would not tackle that anymore. The only thing I would say is that, you do not need to change. What you need to do is you should know the difference of FORMAL to INFORMAL ENGLISH and when you should use it. For daily speaking, it is proper to use informal english or "slang"...
@MsTickle (24966)
• Australia
8 Feb 09
There is absolutely nothing wrong with saying "that's" it's a natural contraction of "that is". Just the same as "it's" is a natural contraction of "it is". Texans have a very broad western accent. It's quite natural for different areas of a country to have different accents and different ways of using the language. Of course, "ain't" is not a standard word but still more acceptable these days than in previous years. It was popular in Australia a while back but you seldom hear it here now...it was a fad we picked up from TV maybe. I think it's rude for people to correct you like that, even if they are right.
• India
8 Feb 09
Ya that`s true in the sense now a days english which we use is quite different from the older version i think english has been reached to far off places but its origin is in england so when it went far off places people from different region used it in difeerent manner like a usa ascent is quite different from the person from uk and a englishman`s ascent will be quite different from australian.......
@barehugs (8992)
• Canada
8 Feb 09
Well I try very hard not to make spelling mistakes, and always use proper English. One of the reasons, I have very little formal education, so I am naturally sensitive about my writing. As a Canadian living in South Texas in the winter months, I enjoy the bilingualism in this Part of America. The people of the Rio Grande Valley are a delight to be among, to live, and do business with.
@ElicBxn (60050)
• United States
7 Feb 09
I've been told by people around here that "You're not from 'round here, are you?" What can I say, slick, I'm not. But I go back east and they say I sound "Texan." Well, I did say my first words here. So, if you want to "talk better" find someone who's speech you respect and hang around them and try to talk like they do.