It’s been a little over three months since I stopped being an arse about semantics.

I didn’t think I was at the time, I thought I was just helping make sure everyone was understood. If people are talking about things in the correct way then communication is easier and the world gets better right?  I’ve even written angry things about it.


Turns out I was being an arse.  And the way I found out was thought a web comic.  This one:

Full, detailed and wonderful description of this complex image is available at

and it stopped me stone dead at “Vindictive about things that are often uncomfortably transparent proxies for race or social class”.

I’m sensitive about class issues, and very aware that I should be doing more on issues of race and it was an awful jolt to see it be put that way.    Instantly it was clear that I had become something that I hate, and that the hate was far stronger than any reason I had to keep up the behaviour.

I’ve not ‘corrected’ anyone’s grammar since September, and I’m working hard to avoid anything of the “I think you mean” variety. I’m trying to check my understanding obviously, I’m trying to say things like “Can I check I understood? ” when there’s doubt, and to shut the hell up when there isn’t any doubt, but old habits die hard.


Anyway, this is a public declaration that I’m stopping.  If you catch me doing it, feel free to tell me I’m a liar as well as an arse.