Wait, you didn’t know National Grammar Day is today?
Not to worry. You’re joined by the majority of the population who also didn’t realize an entire day has been designated to celebrate all the wonder and merriment that is grammar.
Now that you’ve caught your breath after laughing for a few minutes, let me tell you about the holiday:
- According to Grammarly, National Grammar Day hasn’t been around all that long—only 8 years.
- The founder is Martha Brockenbrough, author of Things That Make Us [Sic] and founder of the Society for the Promotion of Good Grammar (sadly, it’s just a website and not an ACTUAL society of which you can be a member. I checked).
- As only a true word nerd could, Brockenbrough explained the date’s significance: “Language is something to be celebrated, and March 4 is the perfect day to do it. It’s not only a date, it’s an imperative: March forth on March 4 to speak well, write well, and help others do the same!”
No matter what your career path is, having a solid understanding of the English language is important. Why? Because language shapes reality. The words you choose to communicate your ideas and opinions to the world define you…to yourself and everyone around you.
Even in a world full of informal digital communication, grammar is a desirable trait. Writing and speaking well evokes credibility and professionalism. A 2014 study reported that “basic written communication ability is one of the most desirable skills for entry- and mid-level employees, but surprisingly is one of the least common skill sets displayed” by potential candidates.
A 2009 survey of hiring managers revealed that grammatical and spelling errors in applications were more destructive to a job applicant than showing up to an interview late or swearing. That means writing “I look forward to you’re response,” in a cover letter is worse than saying, “Shit, I increased sales by 85% one quarter because..” to your potential boss.
All joking aside, grammar is not a laughing matter. Just ask the city of West Jefferson, Ohio. Last year, the city lost a court case because a judge ruled that a missing comma in a city ordinance was enough to overturn a fine about where vehicles can be parked on streets. In his ruling, the judge wrote: “If the village desires a different reading, it should amend the ordinance and insert a comma between the phrase ‘motor vehicle’ and the word ‘camper.’
Yay for grammar!
So how can you celebrate this important day? Here are a few ideas:
- Take this fun Grammarly quiz to find out what type of grammarian you are. (No, Grammar Nazi wasn’t my result; I’m the Pedant’s Grammarian – I like enforcing the rules as much as I like the rules themselves.)
- Buy an awesome gift that celebrates just how great grammar is.
- Laugh a little at this March Forth: The Grammar Song video or these Hilarious Grammar Mistakes.
Review these atrocious “Word Crimes” so you don’t commit them:
Thanks for taking a few minutes out of your day to learn about the importance of grammar, and happy celebrating!
Want more? (You know you do.) Check out these articles:
- Word Nerd Alert: Commonly Encountered Conundrums Explained
- Six Tips For Editing Like A Pro
- 8 Ways To Spot A Word Nerd