Monday, September 28, 2009

In Defense of a Young Paul McCartney

The Guardian has a piece today about the earliest example of writing by Paul McCartney--an essay he wrote when he was just 10.

The essay has specialist significance for Beatles enthusiasts thanks to a grammatical error, ringed in red by his English master at Joseph Williams primary school in Belle Vale. Although McCartney may have been wrong to begin two sentences with the conjunction "But", his capital Bs reveal the same twirly ends later used on the Beatles' drum skin in 1962 – his contribution to the design. (Read the rest.)

Let's just have a moment of awww for how cute this is. We always liked Ringo for his big, goofy nose. But now, we're going with the crowd. Paul McCartney really is the cutest Beatle, at least until someone digs up Ringo's math homework from third grade.

McCartney's only real mistake here was starting a sentence with a conjunction in an English class. English teachers are often wrongly hung up on this non-error. Great writers have started sentences with conjunctions for at least as long as English teachers have been slinging red pens. It's not worth arguing the point with the teachers, though, because they're the ones who have the power to give out the points that count toward one's grade.

1 comment:

thmn said...

Dear Martha,

My noble contribution towards improving grammar is by opening others' eyes towards how funny it looks without it. Check out my blog: www.spookyenglish.blogspot.com

Will be updating it soon with new pix I got from my recent one month travel.

Thommen Jose