There was this headline today on Yahoo!news that linked to a Redbook magazine story about parenting:
“Should mom be selling girl scout cookies for her daughter?”
Why “be selling”? What is wrong with “Should mom sell Girl Scout cookies for her daughter?”
There’s a growing, and annoying, prevalence of “be” in language, and I’m not sure why or where it’s coming from. Well, I think I know where, but I’m not sure, and I’m not happy about my theory. It’s all about tense.
I sell. You sell. He sells. They sell.
I be selling. You be selling. He be selling. They be selling.
If I use “be selling” then I’ll always be correct. I don’t have to worry about sold, has sold, had sold, will sell, will have sold, etc.
This is the theory which is mine.