I am SO bad at several things. I suck horribly at school. I love music yet I am painfully tone deaf. I am not good at any sport or any other physical activity. I fell in love with photography but then it just proved that I am no good at any form of art. Needless to say, singing and dancing are out of the question.
If there are a few things I am good at, one is annoying my friends with my sarcasm. I am also more technologically inclined than the average person but only because I am so addicted to tech news and gadgets. Yet I cannot afford most of the gadgets those blogs talk about.
Another thing I am inclined at is English. Though my spoken English is nowhere near announcer/emcee level, I can say I have a fair command of the English language in terms of reading, writing and speaking. Back in elementary school, I used to proof-read my college sister’s English papers. And this is something I never learned in school. Most English I know – pronunciation, spelling and grammar I picked up through media. Like any kid, I enjoyed cartoons. Thankfully, back then we didn’t have Tagalized cartoons. Also back in elementary school, my dad (a book lover) forced each of us (me and my siblings) to finish one book. Most of them Og Mandino titles. I never got to page ten. But my parents had a Reader’s Digest collection from decades of subscription. Some dating all the way back to the early 80’s. I learned more through Reader’s Digest’s Humor section. Yes, Humor. I didn’t read the articles. Looking back, even as a kid, I could tell what kind of adult I would grow up to be.
I can say this, and my heavy exposure to American TV and culture, was my edge in getting my first ever job. I worked in a BPO. I talked to foreigners everyday. But during training and even on the operations floor, I had no trouble with language. Even when I moved up and was taken off the phones, language has always been on my side. For that I am thankful.
Sadly, technology is slowly killing my command of English. I am relying more and more to Word’s F7 function or Googling for correct spellings. I didn’t have the need back then. And I don’t recall being corrected that often. Now I don’t feel confident writing a decent article without automated grammar correction. I correct myself on simple mistakes like their-there-they’re and you’re-your. The thought of missing something scares me. I blame my heavy exposure to the Internet. Its my fault.
English proficiency is such a big problem. Being exposed to a tsunami of grammatical mistakes on the Web, I feel blessed and also un-vindicated. I feel good that I can somewhat avoid grammatical scrutiny but do I (need to?) feel good only because a ton of other people are making mistakes?
Why write about this? Because…