In a 2004 article commemorating this celebration of writers and editors, titled "Common Sense Journalism," Doug Fisher discusses Post Grammatic Stress Syndrome, "a serious affliction as we see a wider generational gap in language and decreasing shared cultural context (partly because of the fragmentation of the same media we are training our students to become part of)..."
He goes on to describe some signs that your favorite writer, editor, or educator may be experiencing PGSS. My favorite:
"The editor bolts up in bed in the middle of the night, flings open the window, and shouts: 'It's 3 a.m. in the morning, and I don't care if that's redundant!'"
Along with the warning signs of PGSS are tips to help those you know suffering from this ailment, including:
- With a reassuring hug, note that you recall at least one time recently where someone remembered subject-verb agreement or used "it" instead of "they" correctly.
- Go through the morning paper first and clip out all the offending items. If asked, say you were clipping coupons. If so many must be clipped out that it's too obvious, hide the paper, say the delivery person messed up again and you can’t get it redelivered because it’s after 10 a.m. – and then disable the Internet access.