Wednesday, August 15, 2007

The Reason is Because is the Reason Why

Apologies for the late post. I normally post first thing in the morning but the horrible weather here in Manila caused a major power outage in my area. Four transmitters flanking my street blew! Power was just restored two minutes ago. I'm posting this in a hurry as I might lose power again and I also have to charge my UPS.

Anyway, among the comments on some of my earlier posts was a message from my good friend Justine ( who wanted me to write about an English anomaly she encountered: "the reason is because." Obviously, this is a redundancy. "Because" and "the reason is" mean the same thing, i.e., the person wants to explain something. I think people make this mistake because they talk faster than their minds think (I do that too!). Imagine, a student talking to his/her teacher: "Ma'am, the reason I was late is... (thinking, thinking...what's the best excuse?)... because... (should I say my dog ate my homework and I had to do it again? Or my mommy washed my pants late and I had nothing to wear?)... is... is... because I didn't wake up when my alarm clock rang!"

Despite the exaggerated example, I'm sure many of you can relate to desperately wanting to explain something but running out of words or ideas to use. When you find yourself in that situation, DON'T panic! Just keep quiet for a few moments. Or, you can be honest (and humble) and say, "I'm sorry, can you give me a few moments to compose my thoughts?" You could also use the more common "um" between words but that can be very annoying if you do it more than twice. It's best to just be quiet and take a deep breath (it's good for the blood pressure too).

Quincy John and Jaki, thank you for reading. I loved all your comments! They made me feel really good about this blog. Quincy, your grandfather sounds amazing and Jaki, I'm glad to be your teacher, even if only on the Net.

I've got to go. The rain is starting again and I don't want to lose power while online. Stay dry, everyone, wherever you are.

1 comment:

Justine said...

Hey Prix, thanks for posting based on my request! Yes, it's really amusing how stalling can actually result in a grammatical error. I enjoy reading your entries! Keep at it!

BTW, my multiply site is :)