Foolish Assumptions

So, the other day a troll landed on my site and told me I couldn’t use the term “It’s a Thought” because he wrote a book with that name.

I decided not to feed the troll and among the very valid reasons was a petty one.  I thought he used “It’s” wrong because he used an apostrophe.  I have been using its instead of it’s for the contraction it is.  Convinced that I was doing it right.

Then K E Garland and I started to chat about it and she pointed out, quite kindly, that I was wrong.  

Here’s the thing.  I was utterly sure.  I didn’t question myself.  I didn’t check it.  I was SURE so there was no need to check it.

Think about that for a while.  I mean apostrophes are unimportant in the grand scheme of things.  It’s just a funny “I’m an idiot” story.  I have had this happen to me before.  On a much larger and more soul horrifying way.  But it points to the fact that I am wrong about other things that I don’t even know to question.

How many things in my life are there that I am so convinced of that I don’t even think about them and I’m WRONG.  How Many?     This is a silly reminder to stay vigilant to my assumptions.

Hundreds and Hundreds of tiny assumptions and some of them are WRONG.

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13 thoughts on “Foolish Assumptions

  1. Up to about 50 years ago “it’s” -like any other contraction – was considered wrong – or at least very bad form. You had to write “it is”. From what I know about language and the way it evolves – apostrophes will probably go away because they aren’t necessary for clear communication. Who would have trouble understanding “doesnt” or “arent” etc? So you are not wrong, you are ahead of your time.
    And as for your new friend – tell him/her (50 years ago “him” alone would have been correct) that you invented trolling, so he/she has to stop.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. First of all, titles, slogans, short phrases and names are not copyrightable according to the copyright office, so don’t worry about it. You might want to point that out to whoever was bugging you about it.

    As for the whole its/it’s thing, what matters is the clarity of the phrase in which it is used, not the form itself. Sure, when I was an editor I would have corrected it if it was used in the wrong form and I noticed, but even then I didn’t make a stink out of it because it happens all the time. The reader knowing what you meant is all that matters.

    In any case, common usage changes over time as Circumstance pointed out.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Somehow I jumped out of the comment, but I wanted to add one more thing.

    We all have beliefs that are wrong. That’s just the way life works. We’re given bad information, sometimes deliberately lied to, form an inaccurate belief about something because we don’t have enough information…

    Doesn’t matter. Happens all the time. All you can do is admit it and accept the new information.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I think you are right about how willing we are to correct an assumption. But as important is that we also check our assumptions occasionally.

      But occasionally an incorrect assumption can be foundational to our world view. And having that proved wrong is very disturbing to self identity. I’ve had that happen to me and it was a bit like being released from a mooring and floating with a rudder.

      Like

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