Grammar Police Do Not Accept Bribes

Ruby: Ginger, what’s this?

Ginger: I don’t know. What does it look like?

Ruby: It looks like a traffic citation book…

Ginger: Then that’s probably what it is.

Ruby: Ginger…did you make a traffic citation book?

Ginger: Don’t be ridiculous. Why would I make a traffic citation book?

Ruby: Avoiding the question doesn’t mean you don’t have to answer it.

Ginger: I don’t have the authority to write traffic tickets.

Ruby: And yet, tickets have been written…wait…

Ginger: I’m ready to accept your apology.

Ruby: This isn’t a traffic citation book…this is a GRAMMAR citation book!

Ginger: I do have the authority to write grammar infraction tickets.

Ruby: You do not!

Ginger: I do so!

Ruby: Making a badge out of aluminum foil, gold spray paint and rhinestones does not make you a grammar police officer!

Ginger: Ah, excuse me. I believe you meant grammar police detective. Read the calligraphy.

Ruby: You can’t write out, let’s see, a ticket for improper use of the word ‘with’ and charge people fines!

Ginger: He’s supposed to get away with saying “With whom should we touch base with?”

Ruby: Yes! Well…no…but, you can’t charge fines for it!

Ginger: If I let him slide, how would I hold my head up when I wrote out the ticket for excessive capitalization in a sentence?

Ruby: Ginger, this ticket is for neglecting to use the Oxford comma when listing groceries.

Ginger: So it is.

Ruby: No one uses the Oxford comma anymore.

Ginger: I’m sorry, are you confessing to a grammar infraction? I cannot turn a blind eye just because you made zucchini bread. The grammar police rules on bribery are very strict.

Ruby: If it was chocolate cake, you’d turn a blind eye?

Ginger: Obviously.

Ruby: Look, Ginger, I know you worry the entire English language is disappearing into an emoji-filled oblivion, but that doesn’t give you the right to fine people for slipping into the vernacular.

Ginger: But it’s working so far…

Ruby: …what?

Ginger: Look, the man who misused ‘with’ was charged 200 adjectives. That was his fine. For the remainder of the day, whenever he attempted to use an adjective, he had to write it down and hand it to me and not use the adjective when completing his statement.

Ruby: Are you serious?

Ginger: I don’t know why he went along with it, but he did, so I kept it going. An email that was sent to the team had capital letters sprinkled throughout, so I made a point of donning the badge I forced my brother to make when he first asked me to proofread his high school papers and wrote out the next ticket at the morning staff meeting.

Ruby: You…are serious. This really happened.

Ginger: She thought the e.e. cummings treatment a bit excessive, but I told her to take it up with the judge and she stopped arguing.

Ruby: Who would the judge be? I’m curious…

Ginger: I assumed my sister would be happy to take on that role, but it didn’t come to that.

Ruby: Okay, you removed the ability to describe nouns for a day and insisted a co-worker never capitalize for a day. But what do you do about the Oxford comma?

Ginger: He had to wear a scarlet comma pinned to his shirt for an hour in the break room.

Ruby: Where do you come up with these punishments?

Ginger: Hey, I don’t make the rules. He was issued the citation, he decided to fight it, we couldn’t get my sister on the phone, and we presented it to a jury of his peers.

Ruby: That doesn’t really explain how Nathaniel Hawthorne got to name the punishment.

Ginger: It was drawn from a hat. You should have seen the other suggestions the jury wrote. Some of the jury members were merciless.

Ruby: You do know that’s not how the justice system actually works, right?

Ginger: Have you ever been to grammar court?

Ruby: No. I can honestly say I have not.

Ginger: Exactly.

Ruby: Fine…one last question, detective

Ginger: Yes?

Ruby: Where did you get the grammar citation book in the first place?

Ginger: Kinko’s.

Ruby: I thought we gave them your photo in a Do Not Serve book…

Ginger: Apparently, that book wasn’t shared across all branch locations.

Ruby: It looks like I’ll be driving to all Kinko’s locations in the city this weekend.

Ginger: Ooh, can I come? I need make some pamphlets about the dangers of abusing filler words.


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