Wednesday, April 18, 2012

shows that I am NOT young

I've been told that I am the only person who would have a problem with/be annoyed by the fact that the following doesn't really make grammatical sense:

So if by the time the bar closes
And you feel like falling down
I’ll carry you home tonight 


IF by the time the bar closes AND you feel like falling down? I mean, I get why it wouldn't work with the music, and that a whole lot of song lyrics make no sense, but still. I'm not completely crazy, right?  

7 comments:

Shalini said...

OK, I've read it over five times and heard the song a zillion times and I can honestly say I have no clue what you are talking about. But then I was never very good with grammar.

Librarian Girl said...

Would this make you feel better? "so if by the time the bar closes and you feel like falling down, then I'll carry you home tonight?" I feel like they could sneak that extra word in there and it would sound ok.

cadiz12 said...

Shalini, I think it's not so much hard-and-fast grammar as agreement, or maybe just annoying to (probably only) me? I know, this is the kind of crap I think about when I'm trying to fall asleep at night. And then I can't sleep.

LG, the "then" definitely goes better with the "if." But I think my main beef is with the "and." Doesn't that "and" just seem like it's conflicting somehow?

I turned to an expert, cc, which originally stood for Copy(editing) Chief; not sure if I've mentioned that here in a long time(granted, she's been promoted several times since I gave her the name). Her response, as expected, was simply to rewrite:

"Is this better? Note the comma, too:

If you feel like falling down by the time the bar closes, I'll carry you home tonight.

I think the 'and' isn't necessary. you could do this: If by the time the bar closes, you feel like falling down, I'll carry you home tonight."

My sister-in-law Madelyn asked her friend, who asked his friend, who dug up some terminology from back in the day:

"The line 'so if by the time the bar closes, and you feel like falling down' is a poorly worded conditional statement. The line makes it sound like there are two conditions to him carrying her home, but of course the bar will close, that's not a condition. What he should have said was 'if you feel like falling down when the bar closes.' Or he could have just left out the word 'and.'"

Madelyn added that they could have said, "And by the time the bar closes, if you feel like falling down, I'll carry you home tonight."

I know, I'm a ridiculous supernerd. But this just proves that, as usual, everyone needs a copy editor--including me, which is why there are always errors in my posts.

Guyana-Gyal said...

Strangely enough, it doesn't bother me though it should.

But it bugs me when people spell 'lose' as 'loose', or say 'bast' instead of 'best', and 'aver' instead of 'ever'...

Nicole P said...

Yessss! This has been bothering me too. And my husband has been giving me crap about it every time I mention it and saying it sounds right to him, but it definitely seems grammatically incorrect to me, too.

Michelle said...

Yes, yes, yes!! My kids play that song all the time and that drives me nuts!! It actually worked its way into my dream last night, where I was trying to explain to somebody why it was wrong...now how nerdy is that?! ;)

Adrian said...

Yes! Nobody understands when I try to explain to them why the AND shouldn't be there. I'm so glad someone else has noticed and mentioned this!

I know I'm a bit late to the party - I noticed it before but I just thought of it today and a quick Google search led me here. Maybe now I can have closure!