I'll be first to admit I experience no shame in substituting a trio of hearts, flamenco dancer, or exclamation point for a sentence wherever appropriate. Texting and online dating have made acronyms and emojis staples of conversation -- and sometimes, nothing is as articulate as a smiling pile of dogshit.
But even if stand-alone images and punctuation marks are high-functioning replacements for complete sentences, there are still those those fleeting moments when we choose to use actual words, strung together all in a row, to communicate. And in those cases, GRAMMAR STILL MATTERS.
I'm not saying it's unforgivable to have an occasional autocorrect blooper or typo, aka act like a human being. BUT! Your text messages shouldn't read like accidental texts sent by my 5-year-old niece. If you split an infinitive, so be it -- but using the wrong form of "there" really has that special je ne sais quoi guaranteed to kill my lady boner. Here's why.
It seems lazy, and lazy is unattractive
Not that you have to pull out the thesaurus and make perfect selections for a seven-word text, but it won't kill you to just re-read what you're about to send. Intelligence is kind of hot and appearing as such makes you seem capable of coherent, rational thought. Also, this kind of proofreading will allow you to fake sobriety far deeper into an evening than your unedited texts would belie.
You're making everyone around you dumber
Short-form writing and lazy English are a really bad combo for the literacy of tomorrow's children… and for everyone around you who you'd like to give a fuck. Consistently overlooking grammatical minefields in time reduces our ability to see language errors at all, in turn making us all one step closer to every scene in Idiocracy.
Short-hand may be hip, bad grammar isn't
If you want to make the argument that text abbreviations are actually a genius form of shorthand, fine. But can you really still not figure out where an apostrophe goes? I'm not the only person to have swiped left on people who can't figure out the difference between you're and your -- a recent study by Match.com found that 69% (ha, ha) of female respondents said they judge men on their grammar.
Punctuation affects meaning
We've all been schooled on the weightiness of texts ending with periods and the difference between "Hi!" and "hi." But it's more than that. A text that says "Your really nice" leaves me wondering what of mine is really nice; while "I want to eat out" conjures unwitting misinterpretations you'll have to explain (or perform) later.
Shitty grammar undoes your oh-so-clever dating profile entirely
After all the work you put into the quippy puns and perfect selfies for your dating profile, it's a shame to ruin everything with a piss-poor introductory message like "Hay hottie" or "Were you at?" Um, no. This just isn't going to work out.
There's no excuse
If you're somehow just utterly hopeless, there's an app that will figure it out for you. iCorrect, designed for 10- to 14-year-olds (umm... ), will stop you in your tracks if you dare to use the wrong use of their.
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Nicole Caldwell is an editor at Thrillist who is tired of explaining 'loose' doesn't mean to fail. Follow her on Twitter: @nicolemcaldwell