Sunday, June 4, 2017

One more post before I go...

Sorry... my mind is still on the comments posted on that thread about the Roloff baby.  This time, I want to address semantics.  If you've been following this blog for any length of time, you may know that sometimes I am a stickler when it comes to word choice.  Still, I doubt I would go as far as the people in this comment thread went.




What we have here is an argument over semantics.  This guy, Jimmy, made a snarky comment implying that we shouldn't be surprised that Zach Roloff's baby has dwarfism.  He used the word "notorious" to describe the Roloff family's tendency to produce offspring with dwarfism.  Now, I haven't seen this show in a very long time, but I understand that Zach is the only one of his siblings who is a little person.  But anyway, Jimmy's point is that we shouldn't be surprised that Zach's son inherited his father's genes.

Instead of arguing the point, a couple of posters took Jimmy to task for using the word "notorious".  They argue that the word notorious implies that the Roloff family is famous for doing something bad and dwarfism is not "bad".  It seems to me that is a matter of opinion, though, since my previous post was about a different guy who thinks it was wrong for Zach and Tori to pass on Zach's genes.  I'm not saying that guy is right or wrong; I am simply stating that he has an opinion that dwarfism is actually a bad thing.  So in his opinion, maybe the Roloff family actually is notorious.  Clearly, that opinion is not the norm.

The post really heats up when a chick named Kristy decides Jimmy needs some schooling.  Citing that she is an English major and therefore knows what she's talking about, Kristy smugly informs Jimmy why the word "notorious" is incorrect in this instance.  Jimmy isn't having it and tells Kristy that she's a terrible English teacher.  He expresses this sentiment with a run on sentence.  In a later post, Jimmy tells Kristy she should get her money back from her college because he claims she's still wrong.  Again, he expresses this in a run on sentence.  Seems to me that Jimmy should be asking for his money back, too.  

Kristy, obviously enjoying a surge of youthful zeal, keeps coming back to lecture Jimmy on his word usage.  She even throws in a bit about how he should consider his audience when he constructs a sentence.  Nice work, Kristy.  Again, I am curious as to why she was so focused on his insistence on using the word "notorious" and not on the fact that Jimmy seems to have an aversion to periods, semicolons, and commas.  I should mention that I was also an English major, and I definitely have an aversion to periods...  (okay, just the ones that come on a monthly basis).

As I was reading this convoluted thread about semantics, I couldn't help but realize once again that I waste a lot of time reading pointless Facebook rantings.  I did happen to get a kick out of this particular thread, though, because for once, it didn't involve me.  I was very tempted to leave a snarky comment about Jimmy's curious penchant for writing run on sentences, especially since he deemed Kristy's education as an English major inferior.  But then I remembered that it's Sunday and I'm already on my third blog post.  It's not even eleven in the morning and I'm still on my first cup of coffee.  The last thing I need to do is argue with strangers on Facebook, especially since so many of my friends enjoy arguing with me.

So instead, I'm just going to express my thoughts here, on my blog-- my safe space.  It's a place where people like Jimmy and Kristy are quickly tossed out on their collective keisters.  For the record, although I do tend to be a hardass about word usage, I don't really object to Jimmy's use of the word "notorious" in this instance.  I'll agree that it's probably not the best or most appropriate word to describe the Roloff family, but again, it's all in how you look at it.  Most people would still understand what Jimmy meant, even if he could have used other words like "notable", "famous", "known", "acknowledged", or "renowned".  Jimmy is also correct in that in the dictionary, one of the definitions of the word "notorious" does not imply negativity, although that usage is rare.  

But really, I think that more of us-- myself included-- should just learn to let things go and move on.  Jimmy's original point was completely buried under a nonsense debate about word choice.  Which, I guess, goes to show you that maybe it is important to think before you type and consider your word choices carefully.  Since I know almost no one will heed that advice, I think I'll just leave it at that and go find something else to do.

2 comments:

  1. While the word "notorious" has, to most of us has negative connotations, it's hardly a topic over which to start a war.

    Regardless, I'd take a Roloff, with their maximum reproduction rate as far as we know to be four over the "Nineteen and Counting" brood any day. I would much rather have grown up a Roloff -- even if the parents did separate -- than a Duggar.

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    1. I thought that argument was kind of amusing, but I'm beginning to think maybe I should quit writing so much. Or maybe I should get off of Facebook. It's been getting me into trouble lately.

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