I received a nice note from Jo Anne, who stopped by here last week. She’d read a post or two about grammar peeves, and she brought up one of her own – the misuse of the word “myself” in place of the word “me.” Example: “Jane and myself agree that proper grammar use is important.”
Maybe some people think it makes them sound smart to use the word “myself” when it’s obvious the words “I” or “me” belong. But unless your name is Myself, stick with a simple, and correct, pronoun.
According to my Harbrace College Handbook, revised thirteenth edition, intensive/reflexive pronouns “often refer to a noun or pronoun already mentioned in the sentence. They always follow the person or thing to which they refer.” Repeat: They always follow the person or thing to which they refer. That means using “myself” in place of “I” or “me” is just wrong. The book calls out the rule even further, using a cute little “Caution” note/icon, saying this: “Do not use myself or me in place of a compound subject.” And it gives a little example, phrased much like the one I provided above, and crosses out “myself” and adds “I.”
So what’s your biggest grammar peeve? I’m a bit tired of the misuse of then/than. I see it at all levels of education, and I nearly thrashed my child for writing an email that contained “then” where “than” should have gone.
How often do you run into grammar issues with your clients/friends/family?