Thursday, October 31, 2013


A few weeks ago I noticed an advertisement on the side of an 89 ‘bus travelling up Shooters Hill stating that ‘Your new Aldi store is now open in …’  Odd, I thought, I don’t recall buying a store.  I knew my partner had recently sold his car and wondered if he had made a part-exchange.  Thinking no more of the matter you can imagine my surprise when I recently heard the announcer at London Bridge Station stating that ‘Your service to Hastings will depart from platform 4'.  Hang on, I thought, I certainly haven’t bought a train and, if I had, wouldn't want to go to Hastings.  Blackheath, maybe, or Woolwich but, even if the train was mine, where would I keep it - the patio is far too small - and why are all those other people trying to get on a train I have clearly been told is mine? 

Troubled by this latest turn of events, I was watching ITV last night when the announcer informed me that ‘Your ITN News will be next’.  Now, this is really too much, I thought!  No one had telephoned to ask me what should appear on the News and, if they had, I would certainly have told them that they should cease allowing men over a certain age to appear tie-less in future.  All those scraggy necks – ugh!  A decent tie does wonders for a mature man in a suit.

But I digress.  I have increasingly noticed the inappropriate use of what I believe is the personal possessive pronoun in relation to goods and services.  It might be different if I owned – or even had shares in – Aldi, South West Trains or ITV.  But I don’t.  I might visit an Adli store, be a railway passenger using a South Eastern train (never a customer: I want passage on the railway!) or watch the ITN News.  If I did own Aldi I would change their uniforms to something more sophisticated.  (I’m not asking that they dress as if they were serving in Fortnum’s but, as a nation that prides itself in being civilised, I simply ask for style... ).  Further, I know the days are gone are when one could arrange for a private railway carriage to be attached to a train (which might make at least part of it mine), and whilst I think ITN News to be excellent, I doubt they would want me to tell them what to broadcast (freedom of the press, and all that).

No, no, no - you cannot fool me!  So, please, please, please can companies halt the onslaught of what seems to be shoddy grammar, a dumbing down of the English language, and stop trying to make us poor users feel we have rights we clearly don’t.

(... and don't let me get started on Your M&S ....)

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