Friday, February 19, 2010

The return of Grammarnoir

I once was wary of National Grammar Day, founded in 2004 by Martha Brockenbrough's Society for the Promotion of Good Grammar (SPOGG), thinking of it as just another excuse for ignorant kvetching. Then, last year, John McIntyre redeemed the March 4 holiday by making it the occasion for a grammar-based pulp fiction serial. The holiday looms again, and this year's dark tale, "Pulp Diction," is already under way (Part 2, with a link to Part 1, is here).

If you haven't read it, or even if you have, you may want to start with last year's "Grammarnoir," in which I was honored to have a cameo as a language moll lurking about in a dark raincoat.

Speaking of mysteries, is anyone minding the store at SPOGG? The National Grammar Day website is a year out of date: "WHO HAD THE WORST GRAMMAR IN 2008? FIND OUT!" it blares. The list of links is full of outdated and abandoned sites. Martha may not be locked up "in the Big House," except in the plot of last year's "Grammarnoir," but do the forces of evil have her tied up in a windowless, wireless-free room somewhere?