Arika Okrent tapped into a universal feeling of realization and dread when she wrote her winning entry for the 2013 National Grammar Day Tweeted Haiku contest:
I am an error And I will reveal myself After you press send
Soon after, she tweeted an amendment to add missing quotation marks:
Make that “send”
“It became a self-fulfilling haiku,” Okrent said. “I wish I could say I planned it that way.”
Sticklers might accuse us of further stretching the definition of “grammar” (the second-place winner out of 269 entries was about punctuation). Grammar is commonly used as a catch-all for the way we present ourselves verbally. Okrent’s haiku speaks to all those errors we invariably make when we’re trying to be careful writing a letter, sending a tweet or updating a Facebook status.