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Song Parodies -> "There, Their, They're (Usage Guide)"

Original Song Title:

"Turn, Turn, Turn"

Original Performer:

The Byrds

Parody Song Title:

"There, Their, They're (Usage Guide)"

Parody Written by:

Tommy Turtle

The Lyrics

Red Ant helped us fix the misuse of "of" in "Of Misused". Hope this song helps to cure "homophonia". (A rotten pun on "homophobia", or gay-fearing; "homophones" are words that sound alike and karaoke alike, but have different spellings and/or meanings, such as those in this song.) OS, featured in the movie "Forrest Gump", is here. MIDI is here (search "turn"). Parody doesn't rhyme perfectly 'cuz OS doesn't always rhyme so well either, but for setting Bible verses* to music, I think they did pretty well, don't you?
To everything, (there, their, they're)
"There's" a correct term, (there, their, they're)
One right word: each... situation in our grammar

First, "there" is a place -- A place that's not "here";[1]
Belongs: someone else? That's where we use "their";
And "they're": a contraction that stands for "they are"
"Contraction": we put two words together

To everything, (there, their, they're)
"There's" a correct term, (there, their, they're)
One right word: each... situation, so don't stammer

If you're sympathizing: "Now, now, dear, there, there";
Remember that "theirs" belongs to an "heir";[2]
Apostrophe? Two words: "They are" turns to "they're";
Mnemonics:[3] help, phonics remember!

To everything, (there, their, they're)
"There's" a correct term, (there, their, they're)
One right word: each... situation; hear my clamor

I think now "you're" there! -- Yes! -- "there is" is "there's"
Apostrophe:[5] one letter gone, as in "where's"
Each such contraction: "a" missing, or "i"
So, when you see... punctuation, "your" mind knows why!

To everything, (you're, your, yore)
"There's" a correct term, (you're, your, yore)
One right word: each... situation; "you're" no scammer

Hello, there! There are... some great writers here
Since days of "yore" ("old") ... ore: gold, we hold dear[4]
Let's stop right there - that resting place there
There! They're there: their... connotations, there forever

To ev'rything, (there, their, they're)
"There's" a correct term, (there, their, they're)
One right word: use it right, you'll... me, enamor
(repeat chorus and fade)

*OS lyrics were adapted from The Book of Ecclesiastes, 3:1-8, and set to music by Pete Seeger.
[1]"There" contains the word "here" -- (T)here -- so "here and there" are places.
[2]"Their" and "theirs" contain the word "heir" -- (T)heir -- someone who inherits something, at which point, it's "their" stuff; it is "theirs".
[3]"Mnemonic" -- a trick to help remember something, such as the two previous tricks and the next one, all of which, by the way, I made up just for this song. Having a pea-brain, the Turtle needs to concoct stuff like that constantly in order to remember anything, such as where in the mall he parked his car.
[4]"Yore" contains the word "ore", which is stuff that's been in the earth since times long ago, or days of "yore"; and might be "gold", which contains "old".

[5]Other uses of apostrophes are covered by Phil Alexander's "'Postrophe" and "Apostrophes contd. - A Few of the Difficult Bits". In the comments to the latter, Luke Brattoni suggested to Phil that he do one on this topic, but Phil graciously left this for me to do, apparently knowing that I would come to AIR 1 1/2 years later. Thanks, Luke and Phil! (Yes, I know the footnotes are out of order; Phil's needed the links to his URLs, which need to go in the bottom comments, not the main body.) Red Ant song cited © Red Ant. Phil Alexander songs cited © Phil Alexander. Original comment cited © Jake A. Ralphing (Luke Brattoni). All else © 2006 Tommy Turtle.

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Original Song: 
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Voting Results

Pacing: 4.4
How Funny: 4.3
Overall Rating: 4.3

Total Votes: 18

Voting Breakdown

The following represent how many people voted for each category.

    Pacing How Funny Overall Rating
 1   1
 2   2
 3   0
 4   0
 5   15

User Comments

Comments are subject to review, and can be removed by the administration of the site at any time and for any reason.

Paul Robinson - April 03, 2006 - Report this comment
OH...sodat's wat dat "homophonia" end "punk-chu-ay-shun" stuff iz abowt...ya' no, I think I wuz absinthe the day dey taut awl dat two are klass. Tree 5s' fore yur pearodi ~ ~ ~
Peter Andersson a.k.a K1chyd - April 03, 2006 - Report this comment
Thar she blows! But this parody didn't! (DKTOS though, so ail have to trust yo on the pacing). :-)
Rex - April 03, 2006 - Report this comment
"Five" contains the word "I've", as in "I've decided you get five."
alvin rhodes - April 03, 2006 - Report this comment
i'm a big fan of parodies of this type
Phil Alexander - April 03, 2006 - Report this comment

Excellent erudition, Master Turtle
T, T, T - April 03, 2006 - Report this comment
Paul, thanks, this song's for you, Bud... Peter Andersson, thanks for the trust and comment; regarding the site you recommended to Red Ant and myself at his "Of Misuse": cool site; I also like "Grammar Slammer": ht**tp:// Rex, thanks, cool mnemonic; remember that one :)... alvin, thanks... Phil A, thanks for praise from a linguistically lofty source indeed :)
AFW - April 03, 2006 - Report this comment
Very good English lesson here...There's fives
Paree Dee - April 03, 2006 - Report this comment
Fives !! Here, there, and everywhere !
Cat - April 03, 2006 - Report this comment
Whoa, Tommy. One of the most clever parodies I've ever seen on here. Excellent job.
TT - April 03, 2006 - Report this comment
AFW, thanks... Paree Dee, thanks... Isn't that a Beatles song?? I think you've got yourself a "Paree Dee idee" there... Cat, thank you so much.
Stuart McArthur - April 03, 2006 - Report this comment
lots of good stuff in here, TT - inc. all the credits! - and I liked the way you varied the endlines of the chorus - 555
Red Ant - April 04, 2006 - Report this comment
I thought you would choose that Beatles' song Paree Dee mentioned for this subject, but this 'turned' out beautifully.
YAD - April 04, 2006 - Report this comment
Ah, their's a good parody. Serious, the versus, there full off humor and they're pacing valu is also as well through the roof. You should know, i consider myself a friend of and ace in, grammar and speling. When someone tell me I doing it wrong, I would be crushed. I vote 5555
Adagio - April 04, 2006 - Report this comment
A tongue twister that made perfect sense. I always wondered what mnemonic meant. Since I always have to use that trick to remember stuff, I suppose I'll have to use a mnemonic to remember the word, "mnemonic". : D

Very helpful and a very good parody! 5's
Tomnemonic Turtle - April 04, 2006 - Report this comment
Stuart, Red Ant, thanks... YAD, thanks, glad it helped... Adagio, thanks... How about your harmonica, i.e. "mine harmonica", then take out "I har a" (No Comment!!!!!!!! :) Yeah, sometimes mnemonics are more compicated than what yer tryin' ta remember, but... :)
Stephen Harrington - April 13, 2006 - Report this comment
Very good, 555. Thanks for giving me the URL.
TT - April 13, 2006 - Report this comment
Stephen Harrington, thanks for taking the time to stop by, and for the votes.
Rick D - April 14, 2006 - Report this comment
I haven't been around as much, but I'm glad I stopped by for this. Where do you live TT?
TT - April 17, 2006 - Report this comment
Rick D, I missed the weekend myself... Thanks for the comment, and see my thread with Stu McA at "My Shell".
English Grammar Gotcha Society (EGGS) - March 06, 2010 - Report this comment
*Applause, stomps, whistles, copies of Harbrace Handbook thrown onto stage*

There are so many writers today who are unsure of their rules of standard usage. They're going to be so grateful that you have presented the subject so succinctly.
Tommy Turtle - March 07, 2010 - Report this comment
English Grammar Gotcha Society (EGGS): Well said, sir -- and quite correctly, which is the highest possible compliment to anyone assuming the role of a teacher. Thanks for taking the time to stop by, and for the v/c. (LOL @ nick and acronym!)

Casting humility aside for the sole purpose of further assistance, the following may be of interest:

"Punctuate" -
"Who And Whom (Usage Guide)" -
"Fewer / Less (Usage Guide)" -

A certain English teacher-cum-parodist uses these in her classes as teaching aides, which is also very gratifying to the author. [1]

[1]That would be the non-vulgar meaning of "cum":
"cum"–preposition: with; combined with; along with (usually used in combination): 'My garage-cum-workshop is well equipped'."
Denise - April 27, 2010 - Report this comment
Thanks this one is going on my wall
Tommy Turtle - June 16, 2010 - Report this comment
Denise, thanks for the read and comment.. Now, if we could just get a period or hyphen after "Thanks", to separate that full sentence (implied, "I give you thanks" , or "I thank you") from the succeeding full sentence.... :-) but glad you found it of continuing value!
Glen S - March 30, 2012 - Report this comment
HA, a very necessary parody. Phil A had to correct me several times on this when I first started writing parodies.
Tommy Turtle - March 31, 2012 - Report this comment
Glen S: ... and now, he doesn't have to anymore. :) Alas, I see these misused far more often nowadays than when this was posted six years ago, so I'm afraid it needs to be circulated a lot more. :-D ... thanks for v/c.
Peregrin - September 09, 2012 - Report this comment
Love it! By my estimate you only have about another 90-95% of the English-speaking world to read this and your work will be done...
Lifeliver - September 09, 2012 - Report this comment
They're their comments there, here's mine. Clever and instructive. There're obviously a lot of grammar missionaries on the site, not surprisingly.
Tommy Turtle - September 09, 2012 - Report this comment
@ Peregrin: And you can help spread the word... ;) Sadly, I think it's getting worse. Grammar and usage seem to be going downhill, with txt msging, tweet, IM, and most of all, less emphasis in schools. Thanks for read and comment.

@ Lifeliver: Now if only we could replace that first comma with a semi-colon, as described here:


Aside from that nit ;), cleverly-constructed comment... Alas, the number of missionaries has shrunk over the years, eaten by the site's cannibals of "Language evolves, and we know what you mean, so who cares?". Thanks for the read and comment, and I do occasionally take a position other than missionary. ;-D

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