I love watching the Olympics. Gymnastics? Incredible. Swimming? Unbelievable. Diving? Don't get me started! Over the past two weeks, I've spent many hours being dazzled by athletes in a variety of sports. It's simply amazing what they're able to do with their bodies. (Speaking of which, I'm also in love with the entire men's swim team, but that's another story.)
During all those perfect performances, however, I've been subjected to a lot of imperfect grammar from athletes, coaches, and commentators alike. Following are examples of some of the types of blunders I've heard so far:
Commentator: "Her and the other central defender have great chemistry."
Should have said: "She and the other central defender have great chemistry."
Swimmer: "I knew it was going to be a tight race. They always are, between him and I."
Should have said: "I knew it was going to be a tight race. They always are, between him and me."
Coach: "There's kids sitting in front of the TV now, girls that want to be Missy Franklin."
Should have said: "There are kids sitting in front of the TV now, girls who want to be Missy Franklin."
Commentator: "This time her and the other forward were very close together."
Should have said: "This time she and the other forward were very close together."
And the GOLD MEDAL for most egregious grammar gaffe goes to a soccer commentator. In the Olympic spirit of good sportsmanship in this post, this commentator, along with the other offenders, shall remain nameless.
She said: "This is a great opportunity for she and her teammates to make a statement."
Should have said: "This is a great opportunity for her and her teammates to make a statement."
I can forgive athletes or coaches for making the above mistakes, but professional commentators? Come on! If you're going to get paid to speak on TV, there's no excuse for bad grammar.
Maria Murnane is the best-selling author of the romantic comedies Perfect on Paper, It's a Waverly Life, and Honey on Your Mind. She also provides consulting services on book publishing and marketing. Learn more at www.mariamurnane.com.
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