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03/31/2014

The “I” vs. “Me” Dilemma

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The “I” vs. “Me” Dilemma

Every minute of every day, someone, somewhere is uttering a sentence with an incorrect pronoun. This tragedy can be avoided using a simple technique for choosing whether to use “I” or “me.”

Let’s look at some examples. It’s not difficult to communicate your fondness for retail therapy by saying,

“I love to relax by spending the weekend at the mall.”

So far, so good. But what if you want to mention a friend—we’ll call her Cordelia—who feels the same way? A lot of us might say,

“Cordelia and me love to relax by spending the weekend at the mall.”

Is that sentence correct? There’s an easy way to find out: Just eliminate the other person (from the sentence, not from your list of friends). What you have left is:

“Me loves to relax by spending the weekend at the mall.”

You would never say that (I hope). Look back at the first example above. That’s what you would say. Add Cordelia back in and you have:

“Cordelia and I love to relax by spending the weekend at the mall.”

Now your sentence is correct.

But wait—there’s more! Up until now, you and Cordelia have been the subjects of the sentence. Would the technique be the same if you were objects? Let’s find out:

“Mall shopping is therapeutic for Cordelia and I.”

Apply the take-out-Cordelia technique and you’re left with:

“Mall shopping is therapeutic for I.”

Wrong, wrong, wrong! You would say,

“Mall shopping is therapeutic for me.”

It’s not any different when Cordelia is sharing the experience:

“Mall shopping is therapeutic for Cordelia and me.”

Use the elimination technique and you’ll get “I” vs. “me” right every time. The world will be a better place.

Posted by: ADMIN

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