Grandmother Was a Prescriptivist
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Alex lived with his grandmother, Miriam. She took him into her home after his parents died. He was fifteen.
Miriam was a proudly old-fashioned disciplinarian. Alex dreamed of moving out. His spankings shamed him. None of his friends were spanked. He had an earlier curfew and bedtime. Homework completion preceded leisure.
Thanks to his grandmother’s strict policies, Alex excelled in school. He lived near a major university. They offered him a scholarship. But he had to pay for his textbooks and lodging. Attending seemed impossible.
Alex’s grandmother offered to give him what he needed and buy him a car. A lifetime of frugality, diligence and cautious investing made her almost wealthy.
Alex was elated. Miriam had two demands. Alex would continue to live with her. And he must obey her rules; accept her discipline.
Desperate for more personal freedom he wanted to run away. Prudence made him thank her and fill out the application.
Alex decided to major in literature. Miriam called him a fool but did not force him to change.
During the first semester, Alex wasted much time. Miriam spanked him for mediocre performance. Being spanked as an adult, made him cry. From shame, not pain.
Grandmaternal discipline made him more studious. His GPA jumped.
Miriam started reading her grandson’s essays. But only after they had been graded. She was appalled. Despite high scores, Alex’s papers were grammatic disasters.
She spanked him with a copy of Fowler’s Modern English Usage. Dependent on her monetary gifts, Alex had no choice but to bend over and accept discipline.
She had been a schoolteacher. That was long before Alex was born. As a young woman, she taught students to diagram sentences. Now she taught Alex. She was a strict prescriptivist.
His fury abated as he realized his cruel, crazy grandmother was teaching him to write clearly. She bought him a Compact OED, a modern Roget and Garner’s Modern American Usage.
Alex’s essays won him a graduate scholarship to an Ivy League school. Instead of becoming an academic, Alex writes professionally. His first book was a success. He is doing research for the next.
Alex’s girlfriend has something in common with his grandmother. She spanks him when he needs discipline.
(Writing this guarantees there are solecisms above.)
(This was written Word 2016, grammar double-checked in WordPerfect X7. Four words checked on Google. Checked with Serenity Software’s, The Editor and WordPress using AftertheDeadline.)