Tuesday, January 03, 2006

Decorative Accents: First in a series

Pardonnez-moi for being really French about this blog lately...and by "really French" I mean "taking a long-ass break during which I did not give one thought to my poor neglected blog".

So, Happy New Year...Bonne Année.

I received a pre-printed Christmas card from some friends a few weeks ago. Below the usual cutesy greeting inside, it had the family's names neatly typed in all caps (another pet peeve of mine):

HAPPY HOLIDAYS
JAKE, PATTIE, JOHNNY & DESIREÉ

Note the misplaced accent on "Desirée". This is a major pet peeve of mine. Americans have, for the most part, realized that there is an accent in the name Desirée. They cannot, for the life of them, seem to figure out exactly where it goes. At least the accent was over an actual letter and not as I usually see this girl's name spelled:

Desiree'

I have seen this mistake countless times, and every time it never ceases to annoy me. You've probably seen hundreds of instances of this on everyday signs:

Rhythm House Cafe'
Cafe' Paris

I wouldn't even go so far as to give these people credit for confusing their Italian with their French; this is just pure uneducated stupidity. I wish Lynne Truss would find a French alter-ego to write a book as filled with rage about French punctuation errors as she did about English ones. She's sort of the Lewis Black of grammarians, if you know what I mean. Needless to say, I greatly admire her approach to the subject...

2 comments:

Sangroncito said...

And don't forget the word fiance!

Lauren said...

I too took a much needed break from the blog. Bonne Année and welcome back