At the risk of sounding like a cranky old lady, what is it with the weird intonation of almost everyone under 30? It hit me today that, even on NPR (which, I believe, is slowly sinking into the morass of bad media), reporters all have that irritating habit of putting the inflection on the end of their sentence, making it not so much a statement as a question. After listening to an hour of this, I have to turn off the radio. I long for strong speakers, with professional, moderated voices. Thinking of Walter Cronkite makes me feel all teary. It seems we are surrounded by young men and women who have a slightly flat, whiny tone and sound so querulous. I find myself muttering, "Oh, just spit it out, will you?" See? I am asking a question there.
As I was growing up, dinner was served at 6 p.m. sharp (Eastern Standard Time). Part of the dining experience - besides practicing our good manners: no elbows on the table, no fidgeting - was the "Word for the Day". My father pronounced it and we were expected to look it up and use it. I am old enough to have missed New Math (thank goodness), but learned to write cursive by slowly forming the letters in chalk on the blackboard, and practiced, practiced, practiced good grammar. What was learned at school, was stressed at home. So I literally cringe when I hear, "Me and Mike went..." Me went?
And don't even get me started on "invite", as in, "Did you send him an invite?" I plead guilty to jazzy punctuation, but, alas and alack (smidgen of Shakespeare in HS), this old fogey is getting left behind in the literary and grammatical dust.