The readers of this blog are self-selecting and would be very unlikely to mispronounce “crisps”, as in; “A packet of cheese and onion crips, please”.
However, they might say “…between you and I,…” and they would be wrong.
I am conscious of the need for sub-editors, but nowadays we have to be our own sub-editors. This post is intended to help with one particular issue, the use of “I” and “me”.
When you are the subject of a statement or sentence, you use “I”; when you are the object of a statement or sentence, you use “me”.
Find the verb and decide; is it acting on “you” or are “you” the person acting?
Here are some examples. The verb is “threaten”; who is doing the threatening and who is being threatened?:
“Brian Cowen threatened me” Correct. I am the object.
“Brian Cowen threatened I” . Incorrect. I am the object.
“I threatened Brian Cowen” . Correct. I am the subject.
“Me threatened Brian Cowen”. Incorrect. I am the subject.
“My wife and I threatened Brian Cowen”. Correct. I (with my wife) am the compound subject.
“My wife and me threatened Brian Cowen”. Incorrect. I (with my wife) am the compound subject.
“Brian Cowen threatened my wife and me..” Correct. I (with my wife) am the compound object.
“Brian Cowen threatened my wife and I..” Incorrect. I (with my wife) am the compound object.
Get the first four examples right and the compound examples will fall more readily into place.
Where you are part of a compound subject or object, it is courteous to place the reference to “you” last; “Bill and I…” not “I and Bill…”; “My wife and I…” not “I and my wife…”; or “…Bill and me” not “…me and Bill”.
“Myself” is a reflexive pronoun. A reflexive pronoun is used when the subject and the object of the verb are the same.
“I promised myself”
It can also be used for emphasis; “I don’t see it, myself”. An interesting use for this purpose is “Myself I shall adore” from Handel’s work “Semele“.
However, “myself” is not a substitute for “I” or “me”; you ought not to say “Myself and my dog…” or My dog and myself…”