Which is correct?
If you are prone to illeism, what do you have a tendency to do?
a. Intentionally disobey grammar rules
b. Speak of yourself in the third person
c. Supply vague answers to questions
Illeism is speaking of yourself in the third person, as not yourself, not someone you’re speaking to, but like some third person that you’re talking about. If I were to say “Ivy Wigmore never wears orange shoes with a purple handbag,” that would be an example of illeism.
Of course, I’d never say that. 1. I try to avoid sounding like a pompous arse, and 2. Well, you just never know what crazy color combo Ivy Wigmore might be in the mood for.
Previously on this blog, I wrote about illeism in Twitter profiles.
Mental Floss lists Famous Illeists. First on the list, Bob Dole. Second, Bo Jackson. Republicans and sports figures, eh.
Follow me on Twitter @tao_of_grammar