The other day I was talking with some friends about our pet peeves. Everyone has them. Some seem to make sense and others just seem kind of funny. In our discussion, the pet peeves ranged from lying to the inaccuracies of the weather channel. One of my major pet peeves is texting while driving. I have friends who tell me it’s not a big deal and they have it down to a science. This idea is something I simply just don’t understand. It’s amazing how dependent upon cell phones we have become over the years. Looking around, especially at today’s teenagers, it almost seems like the cell phone has become another extremity-- attached to the hand at all times. It seems a little excessive to me, maybe even an addiction. Don’t get me wrong, I am lost without my cell phone. I consider it a necessity in my everyday life and I am a pretty big texter. However, I don’t do it while driving and if I’m talking to someone while I’m on the road, it’s hands free. According to an article on Oprah.com, author Sari Harrar writes, “A recent survey found that 77 percent of respondents said they've texted or sent mobile e-mail while driving.” It is also quite alarming to me that studies have shown that while driving drunk makes you four times as likely to be in an accident, texting while driving makes you eight times as likely to be in an accident (see chart). I just can’t imagine what could possibly be so important that so many people can’t hold off on reading and sending text messages until they have reached their destination. I doubt anyone would argue that the message was worth sending if it caused them to kill someone. Ok, I’ll get off my soap box now.
Pet Peeve (noun) - a major annoyance or complaint
Discussion (noun) - an act or instance of discussing; consideration or examination by argument, comment
Inaccuracy (noun, plural --cies) something inaccurate; error
Dependent (adjective) - relying on someone or something else for aid, support
Extremity (noun) - a limb of the body
Respondent (noun) - a person who responds or makes a reply
Soap box (noun) - an improvised platform, as one on a street, from which a speaker delivers an informal speech, an appeal
Fill in the Blanks
1. The man was preaching his beliefs on a _________ outside of Penn Station.
2. There were fourteen __________ who replied to the volunteer request letter.
3. It is important to cover all of your ___________ when it is cold outside.
4. She is __________ upon alcohol.
5. The form was filled with so many _________, it needed to be redone.
6. The parents needed to have a ___________ about their daughter's behavior with the teacher.
7. Dirty dishes in the sink left from the night before is his biggest ____________.
In formal writing, it is best to avoid using contractions. However, since blog writing is an informal style of writing, I have used several contractions. Can you find all of them and undo the contraction? For example: I'm = I am.