I got into an argument with a couple of friends last night. We were arguing how to spell the word lei'd as in, "Come to Hawaii and get lei'd." You know the slogan they print on t-shirts and coffee cups to conflate the placing of a flowery lei around your neck with a more salacious intent?
I was not only wrong; but I was also being stridently wrong. I came home and started looking for how to spell the word, a noun, that was being transformed into a verb. One of friends said that the issue had to be that it was being used as slang and used the apostrophe d. He was right. I am waiting to see him in the flesh to tell him so.
I couldn't see it because the use of apostrophe in that case would be like the way that it is used in words like she'd or I'd where it stands for the contraction of the word would. That would make the word lei'd mean lei would which makes no fucking sense.
The meaning of the word on the coffee cup is all about changing the noun lei, a flower necklace, into a past tense and past participle form of the word lay. The contracted form of the word would doesn't automatically make the noun into a verb. In other words, the people who are branding the slogan, simply made up some rules as they went along and they stuck.
I think that the reason that I argued so stridently was that this strikes a nerve with me. I spent 32 years learning how to teach grammar to kids and the last three using Common Core where we were told to stand down and let the kids spell and put things down anyway that they wanted. As long as I could make out what they were trying to say, it was supposed to be good.
That's actually a pretty stupid way of thinking. It represents a falling away from educational standards, a lowering of the bar, so to speak. All these rules represent thousands of years of evolutionary changes in the way that we communicate. These changes, for the most part, were usually aimed at making language more concise and our communication more efficient.
We used to understand that this was a good thing, now we don't. There has been some serious dumbing down of curriculum these last few years as we stumble deeper and deeper into the age of artificial intelligence. We teach kids that knowing how to use electronic devices well is the equivalent of being smart. It is not.
It is actually a process of dumbing people down. For example, just because a student has the phonetic ability to read War and Peace, it doesn't mean he or she can come close to understanding the points that Tolstoy was trying to make.
Just because they can look the information up on Google doesn't make them any smarter either. What are we teaching, how to look up information or how to understand information. Knowing how to find information is important, but then you still have to learn what it means, and that takes real learning, not artificial learning.
Learning to read and analyze the material actually makes you more intelligent, using what someone else has written on the subject, doesn't necessarily make you any smarter. You bypass the thinking part of things, the part where you actually have to figure shit out for yourself.
Saying that someone can just write anything down on a piece of paper, and it's considered acceptable, is just a crazy way of putting the work on figuring out what is being said on the teacher and not the student. It teaches the students that they do not have to be concise in their language, and it's okay to say things that actually make you look pretty stupid for saying.
I've read a awful lot of student essays in all my years as a teacher, and I'm sad to admit that a substantial majority were not worth the paper that they were written on. There was real no commitment on the student's part to do the best that they could do, or even to try to say things in a logical, coherent language. Writing is hard and they didn't want to put the effort into it.
For a lot of them their writing exposed them as being somewhat deficient in the skills that make a human more intelligent like comprehending, analyzing information, synthesizing, combining, summarizing, spelling, and using punctuation at best, or just being lazy, apathetic, and incompetent at worst.
It also basically states that there will be no consequences for not learning how to think or learning how to communicate what you know. This is an outright falsehood. Life punishes those who think like that rather severely.
So, to say that this is fundamentally okay is stupid. These words should never come out of professional educator's mouth. It is also a pretty damn good way of knowing if someone should even be in education in the first place.