Ok… in this edition of “get your head out of your grammatical ass”, we’ll address two of the simplest (and the two most commonly-used) words in the english language: “I” and “Me”.
Over the years, people in general have developed “Meophobia”. For some reason, they have had the I vs. Me thing beaten into them so badly that they flat-out refuse to use “me” at all, ending everything in “I” by default. This, my friends, is dead wrong. Every bit as wrong as the original offender, i.e. “Me and ____ are going to the park”.
Now, to clear up the mess, beginning with an all-to-often poorly phrased photo caption.
“Ronnie, Bobby, Ricky, Ralph and I”
Tearing apart this phrase, we can easily see that what’s it’s truly – and incorrectly – attempting to convey is, “This is a photo of Ronnie, Bobby, Ricky, Ralph and I”. Obviously none of us is the subject of the sentence; the photo is. We are the objects of the sentence. To simplify things, just remove the rest of the guys!
Now, would you say “This is a photo of I?” I sure as shit hope not, or you have a lot more to worry about than grammar. In fact, you might want to get “blink” and “breathe” tattooed under your eyelids, just to be on the safe side.
Any person with a modicum of intellect would say “This is a photo of me.” Putting the rest of the guys back in doesn’t change that. “This is a photo of Ronnie, Bobby, Ricky, Ralph and Me.” Removing the first portion of the sentence doesn’t change that, either. “Ronnie, Bobby, Ricky, Ralph and Me”. Also, the preposition (“of) – whether implied or actually present – helps confirm that “me” is appropriate.
Ronnie, Bobby, Ricky, Ralph and I won the Grammy. (I won the Grammy)
The Grammy was given to Ronnie, Bobby, Ricky, Ralph and Me. (The Grammy was given to me)
See how simple it is?!?! A monkey could do it.
(Of course it wasn’t actually Me; it was Mike, but that’s beside the point.)
Unless of course, we’re all headed to the park. In that case, “Ronnie, Bobby, Ricky, Ralph and I are headed to the park” since we are now the subject of the sentence, rather than the object. Me would never head to the park. I would, however. Again, we remove the group and look at what sounds best… and it becomes quite obvious.
Now that we’ve covered both the apostrophe/plural issue (in a prior blog) and the Me/I thing, we’re all much better armed to take over the world without sounding like a bunch of utter morons.
On second thought… world leadership appears to require just a bit of stupidity these days… so make sure you don’t lose it all.