Karaoke definitely had the biggest effect on my relationship with Meat Loaf. I have always loved Pat Benetar and the B-52’s, but I haven’t always been a Meat Loaf fan. But you know how karaoke goes; my friend secretly signed me up to sing “I Would Do Anything for Love.” So, I did, and, what can I say, a little tequila-inspired power ballad catharsis in front of my drunk brethren and I felt a real connection with the guy.
But, apparently, I didn’t know Meat Loaf as well as I thought. I don’t know how this conversation between me and a friend started the other day, but somehow it culminated in this disagreement: I was convinced that “Close My Eyes Forever” was a Lita Ford and Meat Loaf duet while my friend was convinced it was Lita Ford and Ozzy Osbourne. I mean, I was CONVINCED. Like I’m glad I don’t have children because I may have bet their lives on it convinced.
Well, my friend immediately looked it up on his iPhone, and it was Ozzy.
Obviously, this resulted in an existential crisis on my part. What could I be sure of anymore? Is there one universal truth or is truth subjective? Johnny Depp is super hot, right? Right???
This doubt has unfortunately bled into my professional life.
I was grading yesterday, and I came upon an error I have seen pop up in my students’ writing lately. It’s kind of a new thing: a handful of students have been starting their sentences with the word majority, but without a or the in front of it, like this:
Majority of Bon Jovi songs are karaoke crowd pleasers.
Before the whole Meat Loaf incident, I had been confidently writing the in front of it, but yesterday, I thought that maybe I should look it up, just in case, you know, they were right.
Well, the good news is that I was right; the bad news is that I didn’t know as much as I thought I did about the word majority.
During my research, I learned that majority should only be used with countable nouns. For example, it’s correct to write:
I don’t actually know the majority of Meat Loaf’s songs.
(The number of songs he has can be counted.)
But, it’s incorrect to write:
The majority of my relationship with Meat Loaf was based on lies.
(I can’t count my relationship with Meat Loaf.)
Instead, I should write:
Most of my relationship with Meat Loaf was based on lies.
But I am still pretty confident it was Meat Loaf and Cher who sang “I’ve Got You Babe.”
Brians, Paul. Common Errors in English Usage. http://www.wsu.edu/~brians/errors/majority.html.