Who/Whom/Shrew/Shroom For Big Thickos Like Me

It really vexes me that I’m still learning the rudiments of my own language. My schooling was not what you would call a classical education. It was more like a contained riot that lasted 7 years. With petrified teachers sometimes hurling a text book or science experiment in over the shield wall. To justify their existence.

As such, I have been playing catch up ever since.

When it comes down to things like who/whom, the fact is I wasn’t even aware there was a rule and I have just been using intuition to decide which to use given the sentence. Well as bloody usual, it turns out, I’ve been using it wrong sometimes. How many times must this happen!?!?!

OK so here is what I have learned recently:

– use who when the person you are referring to is the subject of the verb.

– use whom when they are the object of the verb.

It’s entirely possible subject/object means nothing to you unless you’ve studied languages. So here’s a quick explanation:

– the subject is the do’er of the verb

– the object is the thing having the verb done to it

So in this sentence, Steve is the subject, and Veronica is the object:

Steve complimented Veronica on her sweater.

So given this rule about who being the subject and whom being the object, here are some examples of how they are used:

– the man who stole my jacket

– the lady whom I encountered on the train

– to whom was the letter addressed?

who sent this post card to you?

whom can I talk to about taking out a loan?

who ate my birthday cake?

whom did the monster gobble up?

who did that atrocious fart?

whom did my amazing fart offend?

– therefore never send to know for whom the bell tolls; it tolls for thee.

They say that a good litmus test is whether it can be replaced with he/she or him/her.

If it can be replaced with he/she, then use who. If it can be replaced with him/her, then use whom.

As for shrews, I think they’re some kind of miniature nervous mouse. Like a vole with self-esteem issues. One could say:

There’s a shrew whom I bullied and who ought to consider taking up karate.

A typical shrew – see how he squirms at having his photograph taken

 

A vole asking a wolf for a bare knuckle fight – I rest my case

Regarding shrooms, I think it’s beatnik talk for magic mushrooms(psilocybin), a psychedelic drug I’ve never taken but would like to at some point. Though given my last performance, I’d need to do it in some kind of sound-proofed Hulk container.

Beatniks, causing trouble as usual

Next week, glue and gloom, loo and loom, zoo and zoom, boo and boom.

If you found this article helpful then send me whisky and cigarettes as a matter of urgency.

p.s. if you spot that I’ve used who/whom incorrectly here, then by all means leave a comment below please!

(terms and conditions apply – subject to a minimum admin fee of £500,000 per comment, payable in gold bullion or human hair)

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27 thoughts on “Who/Whom/Shrew/Shroom For Big Thickos Like Me

  1. Oh, I am absolutely crying with laughter … from laughter? … because of laughter?… due to laughter?!!!! Too many rules.
    “Who” is what the owl calls; “whom” is what an owl with a twig up its butt calls.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. You should read the latest comment of a suspiciously handsome man.
      HA ha – glad it gave you a larf Susan. I conclude I will never really learn these rules and I have to accept that I will be the man whombobble uses these things wrong for the rest of his life.

      Like

  2. Waves of panic washed over me as I re-read this post. Panicking that no human could ever write such a perfect blog post again, and dreading a future littered with nothing but disappointment.
    Also panicking because I spotted a mistake(already!?) in my who/whom usage. I give you exhibit A:

    There’s a shrew whom got bullied(already sounds insanely wrong!) and who ought to consider taking up karate.

    I foolishly thought the whom there was the object of the bullying. But in that particular sentence it’s not an object at all, it’s the subject of “got”. So I totally bollocksed that example up. I’ve corrected it now.

    Let the record show that I have never bullied a shrew in my life. Tortoises and snails, yes. Shrews are simply too fast to catch. One of these days!

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Are you doing the Prompt of the Day? “panicked” I’m going to give it a shot.
    BTW: I LOVE YOUR PHOTOS!! YOU ALWAYS HAVE THE BEST, and today was no exception. Sorry, didn’t mean to yell, just got carried away.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. What prompt of the day? I’m scared now. Are we in some kind of virtual reality TEST? Are these people PLAYING WITH ME?

      OK … breathe.

      I’m glad you appreciate the photos. I was out all morning taking those. It’s difficult finding the subjects sometimes, especially the beatniks.

      Liked by 1 person

        1. Indeed, wary of outsiders and easily startled.
          Sadly the shock of the photograph was simply too much for these two and they ran out under an oncoming bus. I can still hear the pop of the bongo drums exploding under the bus wheels.

          In a funny way though, I think it’s what they would’ve wanted.

          Liked by 1 person

  4. To whom it may concern:

    The Who said it best: Who are you? Who, who, who, who?

    However, Dr Who is now quite concerned about Susan and Doubtpuppet.

    Although I generally know when to use who and whom I am so confused now I may never use either word again. 😀

    Liked by 1 person

    1. The post was a resounding success then!
      Ha ha ha – this is why I didn’t go in for teaching.
      Sorry if I have contaminated your English with my appalling explanations! Ha ha ha. I’ll do more of these posts! Next time, when to use which and that!
      Concerned about me and Susan? Ah Dr. Who can’t help us. If Dr Who’s first name was Derek, would that make his full name Derek Who? Discuss…

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I heard these words for the first time in my life just now. Also, I care so, so much about grammar but will never know it perfectly well, neither of the 4 languages I’ve studied was learnt well enough to be proud of. Hehehe

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        1. Well I dont think many people get into such vonvoluted stuff in a foreign lanuguage. I always feel bad I dont know my own language though. So when I can I try to learn something new. English is a hotch potch of different languages though so lots of inconsistencies and add-ons. 4 languages is impressive. I only did 2. I am going to guess yours. Bulgarian, English, Russian, crap, Im struggling now, this was a foolhardy undertaking. Hmmmmmm you mentioned Belgium so Im gonna say French(even though it could be Flemish, but I’m going with French(which means German will be the right answer)(though now Ive said that maybe Italian.
          Help me!

          Liked by 1 person

          1. Heheh! Except Bulgarian, which is obvious, I’ve studied English, French, Dutch (Flemish, it’s almost the same but the Flemish sounds sexier to me) aaaaand someeee Russian long, long, long time ago at school but these days I hear it on a daily basis because we watch Masha and the bear 3 times a day plus some really funny Russian series. I don’t remember what word I used a few minutes ago but I don’t speak all of them fluently AT ALL!

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            1. AHA just as I thought. The trick 5th secret language! Excellent.
              Flemish does sound sexier somehow. I know not why.
              How cool – having an excuse to watch those kids’ cartoons again. I’d like that. I tried getting my nephew a DVD of my favourite show when I was a kid but he turned his nose up at it. Little SOD!

              Liked by 1 person

              1. It’s sexier because it sounds tougher, its “R”. I can’t be sure, that’s my reason. Because it sounds like an order?!
                I love cartoons, but Masha and the bear in particular and my son is too young to know better, so I choose! I just hope he’ll have a good taste and won’t make me watch people playing with play doh on youtube… or hairstyles (my secret fears) :)))

                Like

                    1. Haha! So I’m going to read a poem about a polyglot soon?
                      It’s hard to say now, but I suppose my son will speak a few languages as well. Maybe not Flemish as he should have, maybe any other but this one. Haha. It’s OK to have a twisted sense of humor, I guess!?
                      Thanks for everything, I’m sorry I’m taking your time for writing funny & educational posts!

                      Like

                    2. Ah OK I think I understand the Flemish thing.
                      I have the polyglot poem now. It was for Twitter which I’ve been trying out so I know how to market my book when it’s released. Here you go:

                      I’m probably a polyglot
                      a language learned is not forgot
                      I think that learning words is hot
                      I’ll fix those foreign films you’ve got

                      Damn I just saw a typo in the poem! grrrr. Twitter poems must be short. So it’s a challenge.
                      Nah, you’re not taking up writing time! I’m bumming around tonight. A bit burned out from reading a ton of poems. But I imagine it’s your bedtime. Moi? Educational? How dare you!

                      Liked by 1 person

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