It was a bit of an out-of-body sensation.
I could see myself, as if at some distance, pushing the cart over to the bank’s customer service counter. I had noticed their sign as we entered the store, and muttered about it all the way through Halloween makeup, Legos, and princess accessories, all the way through the checkout line, and nearly all the way to the exits, when it happened: I turned the cart around, and headed for the bank.
Why do I do this sort of thing?
Because good grammar in public is very, very important to the public well-being.
And, I’m a geek. Seriously. Four time county-champ spelling bee winner. In high school. If that does not solidify one’s reputation as a geek (and simultaneously kill one’s social life dead, dead, dead), I don’t know what does.
The sign read:
“Theres no tricks to these treats.”
Twitch along with me, won’t you?
Happily, my children are used to my uncontrollable language urges, and the customer service guy was really affable about the whole thing as I informed him that there was a problem with the sign.
“Oh, do we need a thing.. comma or whatever?”
Ummm….. no. You need subject/verb agreement.
Take your pick: “There are no tricks to these treats” or “There is no trick to these treats.”
I have no idea if they’ll actually change anything on one crazy lady’s say-so. I’m sure the girl who made the sign thinks it is perfectly acceptable. She also probably has really bad breath, and grows horns now and then. (Not that creating poorly-thought-out public signs leads to that sort of thing. I’m sure it doesn’t. Well, pretty sure.)
It’s bad enough that the regional dialect has my boy struggling to make out the difference between “Sale” and “Sell” (there isn’t one, phonetically, if you’re from here.) I’ll be danged if we’re going to go about mixing up the subject/verb agreement rules. There are some limits past which society simply cannot be allowed to travel.