When you speak, do you ever end a sentence with “at” — and I don’t meant the “@” sign, either! Here are some examples:
“Where did you put it at?”
“How far away is it at?”
“I lost my key, where did you last see it at?”
I admit I have been guilty of ending a spoken sentence with “at” at times in my life, and I’m not proud of that grammatical error. And old English professor of mine — from England! — had been teaching at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln for 30 years before I met him. He would always reprimand me, and all his students, when we would end a spoken sentence with “at.”
Few of us ended a written sentence with “at.” He said “at” was our accent and it “branded us as Nebraskans.” He wasn’t giving us a compliment. Our professor claimed he lost all his hair by pulling out single strands every time a student used “at” at the end of a sentence. I can imagine him, 50 years ago, yanking out a single hair and wincing as he handed the strand to offending student.
Do you have any bad grammar habits that were born into you based on region or geography that ended up getting you mocked by The Grammar Police? Can you share any grammar traps that always catch you when moving from your native language into a second or third language and the rules you use to help you remember the proper sentence structure?