No, I’m not channeling my inner pirate. And, right off, I admit to being a closet snooty person about grammar. However, I do understand that language is ever changing, mapping our ways and means of communication. So, unlike political candidates these days, I’m a proud centrist with respect to grammar (and in politics, too, but I promised myself not to hyperventilate on my blog).
So, as we now say, it’s all good, right?
But.but.but good writers keep on telling me to strip nonessential words. Make every word punch above its weight, right? Which means meaning is important, right? In particular, a writer needs to paint a picture of action so the reader can follow the story, right?
So here we are back at good old bring/take.
Here is an ad from Writer’s Digest. The folks that advertise themselves up as the most complete writer’s resource. The closet snooty person says, “bring things here and take things there.” If you’re going from here to some other place, it’s take, even if one is speaking of electronic files.
So, the new quandary for the snooty grammarian is a variation of that old tree-falling-in-the-forest question: If everyone uses bring for all movement from place to place, does the writer simply acquiesce on the grounds that his more precise use of bring-take will be lost on modern ears?
Or maybe the writer quits grousing and writes better.