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Friday, March 9, 2012

Glamour & Grammar & Gavin DeGraw

Welcome to the third edition of Glamour & Grammar, the blog series in which I address grammatical failures in pop culture. Today we'll be talking about Gavin DeGraw and his preposition problems.
Gavin's newest CD, Sweeter, totally melts my soul. I haven't figured out exactly how it causes this soul melting, but I'm guessing it has something to do with the way Gavin plays the piano and croons like an angel sent from the heavens above. My soul  Play-Doh.

But there's this one song that always irks me. It's called "You Know Where I'm At." 

"Oh, it's better up ahead / The worst is over now / Remember what I said / 

To live you don't have to look back / but if you ever do, you know where I'm at"

You can listen to it below. I also included the most soul-melting song on the CD for good measure.

Let me preface my critique by saying that I don't abide by the old "Don't end a sentence with a preposition" rule. Prepositions are actually some of my favorite words to end sentences with. If you read some of my old posts, you'd probably find sentence-ending prepositions strewn throughout. They are all over. Sentence-ending prepositions are just something I am a huge fan of. I'll stop now so that we can move . . . on. Bahaha, I crack myself up. (I really am stopping! That "up" wasn't functioning as a preposition!)

Even though I usually don't mind a good new-fashioned preposition at the end of a sentence, the way Gavin has used this preposition drives me crazy. (And not like Britney-Spears-circa-1999 crazy. Like Britney-Spears-circa-2007 crazy.)

It's just so unnecessary. The idea of at-ness is already all wrapped up in the word "where." 

It makes just as much more sense to say, "You know where I am." 

You can apply this to a few other prepositions as well. "To" and "until" are two oft-abused prepositions that come to mind. If a sentence makes sense without the preposition at the end, leave it off! "Where are we headed to?" becomes "Where are we headed?" "How late does it go until?" becomes "How late does it go?" And just like that, you've saved two more prepositions from going to waste. (Look at you, conserving prepositions like a champ.)

In related news, I have always held that spelling and grammar skills can be mutually exclusive. Check out one Google search I conducted while writing this post:

That didn't even merit a "Did you mean...?" They went straight for the "Showing results for..." #harsh #butsodeserved
I swear I do know how to spell both "yield" and "symbol." What can I say? Sometimes my fingers are in a hurry. 


  1. Britney-Spears-circa-2007 was the best link ever. i'm still laughing...a day later.

  2. Best G&G to date. I loved the explanation about conserving prepositions. So clear!

  3. Hahaha - oh, Kate, I love this post. I have to be honest - I prefer not to end sentences with prepositions, but most of the time I do anyway. I agree with you, too, on the overuse; I don't know why, but it seems speakers of American vernacular have an addiction to tacking on a preposition onto every sentence possible.


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