WATCH YOUR LANGUAGE, EH? PART 8: “HELP! I NEED SOMEBODY”…

Paul Mcsomething or other has taken our challenge and has sent in the following rewrite of the famous Beatles’ tune titled ‘8 Days a Week’. Let’s have a REALLY BIG SHOUT-OUT to Paul (who claims he’s a knight and the co-author of “8 Days..”). Yeah! Yeah! Yeah, right! What some folks won’t do to get on this site…Go ahead Sir Paul, let’s hear what you’ve got! Ladies and gentlemen, here’s Paul Mcsomething or other with his new hit…

8 PARTS OF SPEECH

It’s time to parse a sentence,

Maybe even two,

Hope you’ll do it right now,

Just like frog’s shown you.

Go, oh, oh…

B. S., oh yes,

B. P., I see

Ain’t got nothin’ but words yeah

8 Part of Speech…

Nice one Paul (Sir Paul if we really believed you). That should get all the folks in Grammarville (a suburb of Grammarland) stoked. If you’d like to stick around, we’ll do a quickie review of the 8 Parts of Speech. Bring on our acronym!

PAPA VINC

P is for pronouns. To avoid the overuse of nouns, we replace them with pronouns. ‘He’ or ‘him’ could be used in place of ‘Sir Paul’, ‘they’ or them’ could replace ‘Beatles’ (but nobody could ever replace the Fab 4), ‘it’ could be a sub for ‘bloggingfrog’, and on and on. We’ve really only scratched the surface in our study of pronouns. As Randy Bachman (I don’t believe he’s been knighted) put it, “B-b-baby you just ain’t seen nothin’ yet!” (we’ll excuse his egregious grammar this time).

A is for adjectives. They describe or modify nouns. Good writers always keep a Thesaurus handy so they can choose the most effective adjectives. Why say ‘beautiful’ when you can substitute it for ‘pulchritudinous’? Just ask Steven Tyler. His new book titled ‘Does the Noise in My Head Bother You?’ is filled with a lecherous litany of profundity (you figure it out!).

P is for prepositions. Like Ed Sullivan, prepositions like to introduce acts…in their case, they introduce or start groups of words called phrases. ‘To’, ‘Of’ and ‘In’ are tops in their field…actually they’re among the Top 10 most used words in English. Prepositional phrases (adjective & adverb) do not contain a verb (as you will soon learn, groups of words which modify AND contain a verb are called subordinate clauses).

A is for adverbs. These darlings perform one of three important duties. #1: They modify verbs (indicate ‘how’, ‘where’, ‘when’ or ‘why’ something happened, happens or will happen and they usually end in ‘ly’). #2 They modify themselves (example: Sir Paul plays very beautifully. ‘beautifully’ is an adverb, telling us ‘how’ Sir Paul plays. ‘very‘ indicates a new level of just ‘how’ beautifully he plays) #3 Finally, adverbs can describe adjectives (example: Sir Paul is extremely talented. ‘talented’ is an adjective used as the subjective completion and ‘extremely’ indicates just ‘how’ talented he is).

V for verbs. Very important words! They indicate the time (tense), the action or they simply connect or link the bare subject with a subjective completion. V = versatile! Go verbs!

I are Interjections (a little grammar humour). Wow! Yikes! Bah! Phooey! Yeah! Yeah! Yeah! Yeah! (Thanks Paulie)…Spice up your life with these emotional blasters! Hockinsmock! (Was that you Mr. Bachman? You’ll never get a knighthood speaking that way.)

N is for nouns. You need a name for something or somebody? You’ve got yourself a noun! They identify people, places and things. Sir Paul, from Liverpool, is a Beatle (No, not a car!.)

C for conjunctions. Coordinate, Subordinate and Correlative if you must know. Simply put, they join words, phrases or clauses. Sir Paul has requested a demonstration for each type and since he did write that lovely song for us, I think it’s only fair.

Example 1: Sir Paul and Randy are terrific musicians. (coordinate conjunction). In this case, there are two bare subjects (Sir Paul & Randy). ‘and’ coordinates or brings the two together.

Example 2: Sir Paul must leave after he finishes this sentence. (subordinate conjunction) Here is your first (but not last) look at a subordinate clause…’after he finishes this sentence’. It’s almost like a complete sentence; it does have its own bare subject (‘he’) and bare predicate ‘finishes’. It cannot, however, stand by itself as a complete thought but try telling that to a Grade 2 student!

Example 3: Neither Paul nor Randy has failed to make it big in the industry. (correlative conjunction)…pairs that go together…other famous correlative conjunctions include either/or, both/and, not only/but also) *****Wow! A 5 star point of information. ‘neither/nor’ and ‘either/or’ can fool a lot of people into choosing the wrong verb (Quit playing with that guitar Paul and pay attention!). Here’s what we mean:

Neither Lily nor Bloggingfrog (is or are?) going to Randy’s concert. Notice that our correlative conjunction (‘neither/nor’) keeps the two singular bare subjects (Lily & Bfrog) apart. Since we are implying that neither is going, then we have but one choice and the correct one is ‘is’ (sorry about the repetition). By the way, the same thing goes when using ‘either/or’. Keep the verb singular UNLESS…one of the bare subjects is plural in which case you use the plural form of the verb. A few examples will help to clarify this important 5 star point…

Either he or she has the information. (‘he’/’she’ are both singular so choose ‘has’ not ‘have’ as your verb.)

Either Tom or his friends have the information. (‘Tom’ is singular; however, ‘friends’ is plural, so we choose the plural form of the verb ‘have’.)

Neither the police officers nor the convict were present. (‘officers’ is plural, ‘convict is singular’ so we say or write ‘were’ – not ‘was’). I repeat: if ‘neither/nor’ or ‘either/or’ connects two bare subjects, one of which is plural, USE THE PLURAL FORM OF THE VERB…

…and before we say ‘ta-ta’ (British for “Get me the heck out of here, old chap!”) remember this last bit of advice:

ALWAYS USE ‘NEITHER’ with ‘NOR and ‘EITHER’ with ‘OR’…It’s like the song of old:

“Love and marriage, love and marriage

Go together like a horse and carriage,

This I tell ya, brother, you can’t have one without the other…”

For the record, neither Sir Paul nor Randy is the author of this song. Sammy Cahn and Jimmy Van Heusen wrote this classic in 1955. Now that was truly a Fab number! Frank Sinatra made it famous.

Enough for today…hope all the people who visit this site are learning as they go. We wouldn’t have it any other way…most of all, we wish that Mankind would learn to share the bounties of our planet…why can’t we all just sit down and enjoy a meal together (and of course discuss the merits of good grammar)…now, back to our ‘pad’…

Bloggingfrog & Lily

p.s. Goodnight knight!