I love Magic Johnson, not only because he's one of the greatest players in NBA history, but because he has a way
with the English language. See, Magic doesn't just speak; he makes love
to words. He once explained the passing rapport he shared with his Lakers teammates by saying "When we're out there, it's like we have ESPN." He also coined the terms fundamativity
, which make my life better on an almost every-day basis.
But some people don't share my generous appraisal of Magic's grammatical successivations. One such person is Star Tribune columnist CJ, whose current column is titled "Johnson isn't magical when he puts a reverse English spin on his grammar."
In it she weaves the dark tale of how Magic recently gave an inspirational speech to a group of kids at the Mall of America -- he cut the ribbon at the grand opening of the mall's new Best Buy store -- and [prepare to be shocked!!] he committed a handful of verbal gaffes, such as saying "hisself" instead of "himself." I know. Pretty dark and sinister stuff.
Her biggest complaint came over this extended Magicism: "You can't be late to the dinner table [when you have six sisters and three brothers] or what will happen? All the food gone." Then: "Now here's a kid from the ghetto, grew up in the neighborhood and he don't [sic] drink coffee and he owns Starbucks."
Speaking as a longtime Magic fan, I can tell you for certain that this oration was actually really good
for him. However, CJ's gripe is that successful businessmen like Magic should be able to speak better, and that Magic's oral diarrhea is setting a bad example for the kiddies...since nobody can succeed if they talk like an idiot.
Really, CJ? I wouldn't be too sure about that
Labels: grammar, Magic Johnson