Prepositions Will Be the Death of Me!!!

Ah, prepositions…

I’m an English major, and so that means I should have a wonderful command of the English language, right? Know every single grammatical rule, structure, word?

Uh, no.

To this very day, I still do not understand prepositions. For the life of me, I am lost.

Story time: my mom, whose native language is not English, would say to me: “Good luck to your final,” instead of “Good luck on your final.” Although I’ve corrected her in the past, she still continues to say the first option. She doesn’t understand the difference between “to” and “on.” And now, as I reflect, she does have a good point.

Like, the preposition “on,” in my mind, refers to being physically above something, over an object (i.e. “I’m sitting on the ball,” or “I stepped on the court”). But when you’re taking a final exam, you are not on top of the paper or anything. That would be really weird.

At the same time, though, “Good luck to your final” is strange as well. ‘Cause the prep “to,” I believe, complements an action, directed at something tangible (i.e. “I spoke to my mom,” “We went to the supermarket”). But we’re not giving luck to a final; we’re giving luck to ourselves when taking the test.

Really, it blows my mind.

Even worse, French has its wacky preps as well. Especially when attached to particular verbs. While there are several which make sense to me/ are equivalent in English (i.e. difficile à= “difficult to” (do something)), others are just plain bizarre (i.e. décider de= “decide of,” instead of “decide to” (do something)). It drives me nuts when I have to write a paper in French and I have no idea which prep to use for which occasion.

The struggle is real.

I will probably never master the art of prepositions. Those slippery, tricky buggers. 😛

– The Finicky Cynic


3 thoughts on “Prepositions Will Be the Death of Me!!!

  1. Now this is funny, come to think of it. There’s still a chance (however remote) that Mom was referring to ‘the (your) journey’ [in life]. And she always wants her beloved a safe trip, whenever ‘the destination’ really counts (since everybody knew all too well that at ‘the moment of truth’, we are on our own).

    So what I’m saying is, Mom might not know English better than any of us, but it seems like she’s wise after all. 😀

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