Tag Archives: Canberra
Note: I took this from the back seat of the car at lunchtime today! Parliament House is covered in scaffolding at the moment, so it doesn’t look so great (plus, the government voted to put that awful “anti-terrorist” fence up, and ruin the beautiful lawns).
I thought I took at least one better picture on the way back, but they were all too blurry to use!
With power lines!
One of our resident adolescent magpies – still with heaps of grey baby feathers – hanging out this afternoon.
Canberra’s Wednesday sunset. I didn’t take a picture until it was almost gone.
There’s no denying Australia is rapidly becoming Americanised.
However, even being all too aware of that, a restaurant review in The Canberra Times yesterday had me seeing red.
Everyone these days plays “sports” – only a few years ago we were playing sport. Kids now learn “math” when we all studied maths. Aeroplanes are rapidly turning into “airplanes”. People have “snuck”, but they no longer sneak. They have “specialties”, but no longer have specialities. We used to buy homeware, but now it’s always “homewares”. We no longer have a sale, but we have “sales events”.
This review, though…
Gus’ is a Canberra institution, and has been around in one form or another since my mother was in high school in the 1960s. It recently reopened in the middle of Canberra’s city centre (and yes, it’s a centre, not a “center”!).
The review, by established journalist Kirsten Lawson, spent much of its word count berating the owners for their choice of name. Lawson then added a little grammar lesson to her text, explaining why the name was ridiculous and impossible to pronounce.
She then proceeded to, unprofessionally and sarcastically, call the restaurant “Gus’s” for the rest of the review – with an extra “S”.
The problem: Lawson is applying AMERICAN grammar, and – seeing as this is AUSTRALIA – she is totally, utterly, 100% wrong.
There was a huge outcry nearly two decades ago when the first Bridget Jones’ Diary movie came out. In order to cater to Americans, they added an extra “S” to the posters: Bridget Jones’s Diary. I was living in London at the time, and the newspapers were dramatically declaring the end of the English language as we know it.
Apparently they weren’t wrong about that!
Why is it we all have to become American? Why is it we are not only losing our own vocabulary and pronunciation (deee-fence is the new defence, reee-peat is the new repeat), but now we’ve slipped into enforcing American grammar without even noticing?
Additionally, what kind of editors are they employing at Fairfax Media these days that they let this review go through?
Something tells me hundreds of thousands of Canberrans from the past several decades might not be the misguided lot here when it comes to English grammar.