5 Simple Yet Very Common Grammatical Mistakes Part 1

Yes, they irritate me.  Yes, I feel smug whenever I hear them.  And yes, I know my grammar isn’t perfect.  Yes, I feel like I am doing our society a favor by posting this.  No, I INSIST that I have a right to write as though my grammar were impeccable even though I know it isn’t.

Image courtesy of uncyclopedia.wikia.com

So, here goes:

    1. Cashier: “Ay Ma’am, baka po may 50 cents na lang sila…”
      I feel like saying:  “None, and if I do have one I won’t give it to you in exchange for your one peso because 50 cents is approximately 20 pesos.”
      Explanation kung hindi mo pa rin gets: cents is to dollar as centavos is to peso.
    2. Kuya Kim: “At ito ho ang pinaka-latest ngayon mula sa PAGASA tungkol kay Bagyong Blah Blah Blah…”
      I feel like saying: “Ang pinaka ay nagmula sa Tagalog na ang ibig sabihin sa Ingles ay most o puwede rin itong pamalit sa suffix o hulapi na -est “.
      Explanation kung hindi mo pa rin gets: Pinaka-latest is equivalent to most latest, which is a double superlative.
    3. Mostly newbie conyos: “I will gonna buy this.”
      I feel like saying: “I will gonna correct you muna ha, ‘coz like, you have mali.”
      Explanation kung hindi mo pa rin gets:In forming future tenses, there are two options:  the will form and the be verb*+going to form.  You may interchange the uses, but don’t mix them!  You may say, “I will buy this” or “I am gonna (slang for going to) buy this.
    4. Even good English speakers: “I have already taken cared of it.”
      I feel like saying:“The past tense has already been taken care of by the verb take.  Pero OK lang yan, medyo mahirap talaga ‘yan.  Just read the explanation below”:
      Explanation kung hindi mo pa rin gets: In the phrase take care, care does not function as a verb but rather functions as a noun (as in “Handle this computer with care.”) so it can’t have a past form (Is childed the past form of child?  Is catted the past form of cat?).  Thus, just say, “I have already taken care of it.”
    5. Stores: Laboratory  equipments and home furnitures for sale!
      I feel like saying: I don’t think you have them!
      Explanation kung hindi mo pa rin gets: There are no equipments and there are no furnitures…only equipment and furniture exist.  These two words are always singular; to form their plural, they must be preceded by a phrase such as pieces of.

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Yes, I know that there are so much more grammatical errors that we Filipinos commit in everyday conversations.  But I chose these five because they are, in my opinion, among the most common despite the fact that they’re so easy!

*be verbs include am, is, are, was, were

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  1. momsterteacher says:

    I’d like to post an exchange (on Facebook; I posted the link of this entry on my FB account and it’s where he commented) between me and a family friend regarding “equipments”. If you are a grammar addict, read on. If not, you have been warned.

    Donnie M. Tulud: ‎”equipments” is already acceptable based on descriptive grammar
    11 hours ago · Like

    Dewmaine Sales-Ladaga: Hi Donnie! Sadly, I’m not a fan of descriptive grammar. In fact, I almost hate it: in my arrogant (hehe) opinion, it just proliferates wrong grammar…it’s an easy way out when one incurs a grammatical error (“Oh, many websites on Google use this.”) While I admit it has its merits (the “their” as a singular pronoun, most notably), it does more harm than good. If they call it an idiom or an expression, pwede na rin. Obviously, I’m a Prescriptive Grammar fan…hardcore! I guess it’s because I’m more of a standardized exam teacher rather than a seasoned speaker or blogger thus my penchant on the “real” grammar rules.
    4 hours ago · Like · 3 people

    Donnie M. Tulud: yup te … it’s sometimes abused tlga… but some native english speakers like our speaker from australia about TESOL do not mind such errors especially among ESL countries because for them the most important thing is “comprehensible” english–our own english is our identity as a nation; thus, we dont need to pretend and aim for perfection that we can speak the language fluently/perfectly…kasi even them, native englsh speakers, commit the same mistakes,, how much more us ESL speakers.. ENGLISH LANGUAGE IS inconsistent, it has no established rules.
    about an hour ago · Like

    Donnie M. Tulud: pero ibang usapan na tlga te kung super duper obvious na ang mali like sa subject verb agreement..
    about an hour ago · Like

    Donnie M. Tulud: the use of their as an adverb or expletives or there as a pronoun and contraction form of nominative they and verb are

    Dewmaine Sales-Ladaga: The thing Donnie is, who has the authority to draw the line between accepted and unaccepted? Can an ordinary English teacher do it? Can an ordinary native English speaker do it? Or does it have to be someone who has a doctorate in linguistics? Of course, the English language has so many loopholes and I agree that even native speakers incur mistakes (in the same way that most of us Filipinos do not even know when to use “ng” and “nang”…we just often use “ng”…can we say that in descriptive balarila, “ng” is an acceptable substitute for when “nang” is what’s needed?). But since we are borrowing the English language, let’s take good care of it.
    22 minutes ago · Like

    Dewmaine Sales-Ladaga: I guess ESL teachers (technically, I’m an ESL teacher because I teach Filipinos but let’s call a spade a spade: iba’ng level ng mga Pinoy sa English thus more is expected from us) would describe my teaching as nitpicking; after all, the primary goal of ESL teachers is for their students to understand and communicate using the English language; things will just get complicated if you automatically insert the “hard and confusing stuff” while a beginner is learning. But, like I’ve mentioned, I teach English for students to ace standardized exams (UPCAT, ACET, etc.). Thus, what’s inculcated in my mind is to follow prescriptive grammar rules (aka formal English), which states that “equipment” is always singular. I can’t tell my class that there’s such thing as descriptive grammar because believe me, they’re going to tell me, “Teacher nakita ko po sa ganyan blah blah blah”, “Ma’am I heard an American say blah blah blah.” For what for (wrong expression intended; I just love it!) pa ang lessons namin kung ia-argue nila yun ‘di ba? Heck, if I were one of my own students, I’d tell my teacher: “E ‘di gumawa na lang tayo ng concensus or signature campaign that we want to accept ‘The boy go to school.’ Or I’d make a campaign for all of my friends to use that sentence until it becomes so common that descriptive grammar will accept it.
    Hay, kala siguro ng mga bata mani-mani lang ang English. Hehe. Peace Donnie. I appreciate your post; it made me think hard. Can we post this on the blog itself? Para kahit hindi natin friends, mabasa. Again, I’m not saying that descriptive grammar is absolutely wrong. All I’m saying that my audience doesn’t need it, and I’m not a fan of it.
    7 minutes ago · Like

  2. momsterteacher says:

    To add to my comment, there are times when I concede to descriptive grammar; when the explanation has a point, I would concede. These are the things I conceded to:

    1. “their” as a third person singular pronoun as it implies that both genders are possible: Esteemed writing styles like the MLA, APA and Chicago accept it. But what convinced was the fact that “he” isn’t really gender neutral, as illustrated in the examples I read from http://motivatedgrammar.wordpress.com:

    *At the funeral, everyone was dressed to the nines, each wearing “his” swankest tie or nicest dress.
    *Is it your brother or your sister who can hold “his” breath for four minutes?

    I don’t think any one of the two is acceptable.

    2. My friend is taller than “him”: I checked new dictionaries and they say that “than” functions both as a preposition and as a conjunction. Thus, IMHO, “than” in the sentence I gave functions as a preposition because what follows it is a pronoun (it it were followed by a clause, it would have been a conjunction). While some might argue that the sentence “My friend is taller than him” actually is a shortcut for “My friend is taller than he is [than is now followed by a clause]”, but then, why would we dwell on the fact that there may be an implied “is” after than when the sentence clearly shows that “than” was a preposition? Let me quote a certain Vic’s post on http://www.dailywritingtips.com, responding to whether or not “…a girl like ME is correct”

    Vic on July 13, 2009 2:28 pm
    I always thought that with the word “like” there is an implied ending. Clearly, if you say “a girl like I,” the word “am” is implied. If it’s not implied, then it would seem that “me” would be the correct word. What if we substituted the words “similar to” for “like”? Then it would be “a girl similar to me.” Or would it? It seems logical because the word “to” creates an object and not a subject. In “a girl like I,” which is the subject, and which is the object? It seems like “girl” is the object, so wouldn’t this make “me” the logical choice as the object?

    *********************************************************************************************
    Ano, nosebleed? Harhar

    • Ria Lontoc says:

      Powerful post, Ma’am~:) While I would proudly dare say that my grammar doesn’t qualify to any of these five errors, (seriously, haha!) it’s nowhere near perfect either and I still seem to be forgetful of the terms and stuff. Aside from making my nose bleed (:P), reading this made me realize that I, especially as a student, should take English more seriously and respect the language even more. I don’t there’s anything wrong with speaking slang, but I think by constantly doing it, we tend to forget its proper usage and basta makapag-slang nalang. :) (“I will gonna buy” daw, LOL.)

      Great entry, Ma’am. I sooo love your humor plus sarcasm. :D

      • momsterteacher says:

        Hi Ria! I just noticed–nawala ang reply ko sa ‘yo! Ang haba pa naman nun. Anyway, thank you for dropping a line :) True, karamihan maka-slang lang.

  3. nice. maganda itong mission mo na ito. ika nga ni darlene english is a borrowed language, so we better use it properly. i admit marami akong mali-mali sa english pero pag may mga ganito na-appreciate ko kasi natututo ako at naita-tama ko. sana madalas kang mag-grammarian sa TM at mag-share ka ng grammar lesson sa educ portion.
    puwede bang isama mo na rin yung pag-gamit ng ‘apostrophe s’ pati na rin ‘apostrophe z’. very common yan sa mga signage ng mga pinoy. gusto ko ngang kuhanan ng picture minsan e. kaso walang time.

    • momsterteacher says:

      Hi Ms. Bing! Thank you. Gusto ko nga Grammarian para madali sa akin. And yes, I’d love to teach grammar on the Educ Portion para wala nang effort sa akin. I really want to do my 2nd speech but I’m having trouble thinking of a topic wherein I could incorporate chronology.

      Thank you again for commenting and see you on the next meeting (can’t attend today, sorry)! :)

  4. joy d. brawner says:

    love this,too,dew! nagkalat talaga mga wrong grammar sa mundo.yung iba pa,anlakas sobra ng loob magblog! gosh talaga!!!
    me,i would never fall for a guy na wrong grammar! IT MATTERS.i know mine is not perfect but i guess it is close to! hahaha :)
    make a part 2 of this please.enjoyed it! i love the EXPLANATION PAG DI MO PA RIN GETS part! hahaha! :)

    P.S. feel free to correct me anytime. :)

    • momsterteacher says:

      Hi Joy! Yup, major turnoff ang guys na mali ang grammar. I’m not asking for one with impeccable grammar pero yung mga tipong “I’ll gonna”, toinks! Haha.
      At mas natawa ako sa hirit mo na: “yung iba pa,anlakas sobra ng loob magblog! gosh talaga!!!” I could just imagine you rolling your eyes while thinking of them, sabay smirk. Tama ba?

      Actually it took me some time before deciding to make a blog, kasi nga I teach language proficiency. One wrong grammar here and BOOM, baka sira agad ang credibility ko. Ako pa naman, type and publish agad. Parang ayokong i-edit, parang hindi na mula sa puso. But writing is my first love…yung teaching, acquired taste. So what the heck, blog na rin ako. Like you said, andami ngang iba jan na talagang parang Morse code ang binabasa mo sa hirap i-decipher.

      Thanks for appreciating this! Actually may nagawa na akong similar dito, here’s the link: http://momsterteacher.wordpress.com/2011/12/07/the-grammar-police-super-duper-to-the-max-repetitive-redundant-expressions/

      And Joy, in fairness OK ang grammar mo. Nothing for me to correct :)

    • momsterteacher says:

      Hi Joy! Yup, major turnoff ang guys na mali ang grammar. I’m not asking for one with impeccable grammar pero yung mga tipong “I’ll gonna”, toinks! Haha.
      At mas natawa ako sa hirit mo na: “yung iba pa,anlakas sobra ng loob magblog! gosh talaga!!!” I could just imagine you rolling your eyes while thinking of them, sabay smirk. Tama ba?

      Actually it took me some time before deciding to make a blog, kasi nga I teach language proficiency. One wrong grammar here and BOOM, baka sira agad ang credibility ko. Ako pa naman, type and publish agad. Parang ayokong i-edit, parang hindi na mula sa puso. But writing is my first love…yung teaching, acquired taste. So what the heck, blog na rin ako. Like you said, andami ngang iba jan na talagang parang Morse code ang binabasa mo sa hirap i-decipher ng mga isinusulat.

      Thanks for appreciating this! Actually may nagawa na akong similar dito, here’s the link: http://momsterteacher.wordpress.com/2011/12/07/the-grammar-police-super-duper-to-the-max-repetitive-redundant-expressions/

      And Joy, in fairness OK ang grammar mo. Nothing for me to correct :)

  5. Donna Stella says:

    Hey Dew!

    So I’ve been going thru your blog (Beautiful lay-out, love the topics, but more on that at a later time, hehehe) and I found this gem, which took me back to my coaching year at a call-center. You will not believe the number of trainees and so called “veterans” who make the same mistakes you have posted. The “will gonna” thing just makes my blood boil. No matter how many times I’ve told them it’s wrong, and why, it’s still the most common mark down for my agents!

    Also, I would say that what pisses me off the most is when English-speaking Filipinos would act superior to everyone just cause they have that “twang” (ahem call center people!) when in fact, most of what they say are grammatically wrong. It’s embarrassing to hear people like that on the streets. Pwede naman magtagalog kung crush lang naman ang pag uusapan, di ba?

    Anyway, just wanted to say hats off to teachers like you and I just wish there were more teachers who actually know the difference between cents and centavos! (Add rant about my daughter’s English teacher who can’t even pronounce “genius” right. End of rant)

    Donna

    • momsterteacher says:

      Hi Donna! Thank you very much for dropping a line :) Nasabi mo na ang iba pang gusto kong sabihin, haha!

  6. How about thr For Rent and For Lease? hehe.

  7. I read this again pero mas heartfelt ngayon haha. Nakuuuu hate ko rin yung number 2-5! As in! My common error then was following “did” with past tense na verb. Took me about three months of conscious checking before I corrected it. Isa pa Dew, yung mga mali maling words like “Keep that bear in mind” (too big. hindi kasya), “Pet beef ko yan” (ew ang gross ha!) and this one I always hear from a dept head sa dating company that I worked for: “Please give her a warm of applause!” Juicekooooo! Dumudugo tenga ko promise!!!
    Pero may AHA ako. Guilty ako sa 50 cents! haha. Ok ok, I’m correcting it na. :)
    Maggie recently posted..Family Portraits by Studio 2716My Profile

  8. bang.. tinamaan ako dito ma’am dew.. whahaa.. kaya sa blog ko, halos takot na ko mag english, at baka ma shoplak ako,, goodness.. I know, and I admit that I am not good, in terms of Grammar. whoohoo..Nice post..

    • momsterteacher says:

      Hi Christine! OK lang yun. How else do we learn if we do not try. Even I commit them. We just have to be more conscious :)

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