Letters to the Editor

To Dangle or Not to Dangle

I had to laugh at your response to the letter from Susan Knight '68 about dangling prepositions. It reminded me that Winston Churchill had this to say on the subject: "This is the sort of English up with which I will not put." Perhaps you have some Churchillian blood in your veins, as your rewrite was so similar to his.

Your answer regarding mistakes in grammar to Susan Knight '68 seemed too curt, too cute and not a real answer to her concerns. I'm baffled almost daily by well-paid TV news reporters who make grammatical errors. Even Bill O'Reilly, who often mentions that he was a high school teacher, used "went" instead of "gone." (He did correct himself, though.)

Re: the response to "Prepositionally Challenged" [and changing] "the most debated grammar rule we've ever run across" to "across which we've ever run," my English teachers at Laconia High and at UNH were quite specific about not ending a sentence in a preposition. (Uh, oh, I just did it!)

Editors' note: To Mr. Leavenworth, we are fond of Churchill's quip, too. To Mrs. Hurley and Ms. Fay, thank you for giving us an opportunity to try again. It's true that good grammar never goes out of style. The rule against ending a sentence with a preposition, however, has been contested ever since it was proposed in an apparent effort to make English grammar more like Latin. H.W. Fowler's book on English usage, for example, calls it a "cherished superstition." (In fact, this issue has two examples of what we think are justifiably dangling prepositions. The first reader who finds them—class columns excluded—will win a UNH proofreader's pen.) Using "whom" in the objective case, on the other hand, is an accepted rule. Sometimes it is consciously ignored, however, to avoid a formal or stuffy tone. We do agree that a university's magazine should be the last place to find grammatical errors.

Chief Cooks and Bottle Washers

I enjoyed the article "Suite Success." When I graduated from "hotel school," we didn't get such exalted positions, but we did know how to get our hands dirty and we were no better than our worst dishwasher who didn't show up for work that day. But an excellent article nevertheless. When I attended UNH, we received in-state tuition because it was the only Northeast university with this program.

A Financial Aid Inheritance

I noted the passing of Norman W. Myers '50, '81H in the Spring '05 issue. Norman Myers' name was known to me as a child. Before World War II, he worked for the G.W. Dinsmore Company in Lawrence, Mass., a manufacturer of cardboard paper tubes for textiles. Shortly after the war, George Dinsmore died and willed the mill to 10 of the longest-employed workers, one of whom was Norman, another of whom was my dad. When Norman decided to attend UNH, he visited our home several times to convince my dad to buy his share of the modest-sized mill. As a boy of 12, I can remember him with his sharp nose, hawk face, dark hair, still youthful and lean of body. I'm sure the price was modest but adequate, and, along with the G.I. Bill, allowed Norman to attend UNH. It pleased me to see his contributions to the university system and the honors the university gave him.

Performances But No Parking?

I am writing regarding the Winter '05 story on long-range campus plans. There was a drawing as part of the story that showed College Road transformed into a pedestrian walkway. My concern with this plan is how it will impact access to the Paul Creative Arts Center. As a Durham resident, as well as a UNH graduate, I have attended many performances in Johnson Theater. I also have a son who has benefited from the many programs offered for youth at the Paul Creative Arts Center. Over the years he has participated in Theater Camp, SYMS, and most recently, the New Hampshire Youth Band. I have gladly paid the tuition for these high quality programs. What has always been an issue is—you can probably guess—parking. My question is, will the plans for College Road take into account the necessity for pick up and drop off of youth participating in these programs? The theater and music departments offer many fine programs. I believe access to the building for pick up and drop off, as well as parking in a nearby lot for longer stays, is vital to the continued success of these programs.

Douglas Bencks, university architect and director of campus planning, replies: I agree that we need to be very sensitive to the access needs of people from outside UNH who come to the PCAC. I assure you that the university will continue to have passenger drop off and pick up and parking for the disabled at the front entrance. The access will change into a one-way driveway directly off McDaniel Drive between the new Kingsbury Hall and Parsons leading to a generous drop-off area in front of PCAC. If you haven't seen it, I encourage you to take a look at our Campus Master Plan at http://www.unh.edu/cmp. UNH considered replacing PCAC with a new center at the edge of the walking campus. However, the recently updated Campus Master Plan acknowledges that the massive funding to build such a facility is not possible, and so we have formulated a vision that will allow expansion of the existing PCAC, including a new concert hall and "black box" theater.