Mama Says … Let’s talk about books, grammar and more

This is my staff - not staffs!
This is my staff – not staffs!

I picked that quote about books since we just finished a book challenge on my blog. We asked people to write a sentence using the words off the spine of a book they were reading. We got some truly great entries. There certainly are a lot of creative thinkers out there. I partially attribute it to the ideas readers find in their books. Thank you to all the participants and thanks for visiting my blog. (Thank you to Tressa who suggested this idea, and to Daphne, my GM, for letting me in on it.) While I couldn’t enter the contest, I thought I would throw in a contribution for my readers based on the title of the horrible book I have been laboring through about Agatha Christie.

The title is Agatha Christie: A Biography by Janet Morgan.

The sentence is: One would never think that someone reading a biography about Agatha Christie would be bored to death!

(Finally, I am down to 10 pages of this snoozer and can’t wait to be done. The torture has been slow and painful as this book has been in progress for months. It has been easy to put this book down and read other ones in between. Back to the library used book store it goes.)

Since we are focusing on books this month, and that involves being able to read and spell, I want to share with you a couple of things that drive me nuts when I read them in a patient’s chart.  There are 2 words used in a wrong manner and misspelled that practically send me through the roof when I read them. The words are simple ones – staff and paper work. What gets my boxers in a bunch is when they are written as staffs and paperworks. Egad! Now staffs is a proper word form when a sentence goes like this: She staffs the unit with 5 nurses because they are so busy.

Now for the incorrect usages. Found in actual nursing notes: The staffs saw that the patient needed something to eat. Staffs! Staffs! What in the world? Staffs are big sticks that sheepherders use to drive their flocks into their pens at night to keep them safe from wolves with big fangs. Staffs are lines on a sheet of music on which notes are printed so that one can play the music. Staffs is not the right word to use for multiple employees. The word is STAFF, people, whether you mean one person or 20! Please get that straight.

On to paperworks: The patient refused to sign all the paperworks. Paperworks!  Really? Paperworks! The correct term is paper work, even if we are referring to multiple pieces of paper. Sometimes when I read things like this, I say rather loudly, “Good Grief! There is no such word as staffs or paper works! This is driving me bonkers!” I have said this out loud with staff around, yes, I have said this, but either the staff don’t think I am referring to their writing, or they just don’t think I am worth listening to. Most likely the latter. I find as a supervisor I get little, if any, respect. (Oh, woe is me!) Quite often I am in my little office all alone when I find this stuff. So no one hears me berating people who can’t use the language properly. The thing is no one has ever asked me about the big red lump on my forehead when I do emerge from my office. In case you are wondering, that lump comes from banging my head against the desk when I read this junk. I suppose I am in the right place to go off my rocker since I work in a psychiatric hospital. Bring on the straight jacket and the big injection of Thorazine STAT! I’m having a meltdown!

I am not trying to be unkind or disrespectful to anyone, but come on. To become a nurse one has to have taken multiple college courses in which writing is required. So how do people graduate from nursing school using staffs and paperworks! Riddle me this, Riddler! I just don’t get it. But, alas! I am perseverating, which is another symptom of potential psychiatric problems, so I will just shut up now or my children will have me committed. That would be a not so fine kettle of fish! The inmates running the asylum!

On a positive note, I have lost 5 pounds so far. The weekends are the worst for me. The refrigerator is just too close and calls my name subtlety 24/7. I had better start wearing ear plugs!

Blog You Later (that is if I haven’t been carted off to the funny farm first)!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *