Monday, August 30, 2010

The Oxford Comma - cont'd.

So let's see...
  • Three chose answer "A".
  • Three chose answer "B".
That makes it as clear as mud, huh???

I remember distinctly being taught to add the comma after every item in a list. I committed it to memory in much the same way I memorized that C-A-T spells 'cat' and that 2 + 2 = 4. Imagine with me in years past when I would roll my eyes when "ignorant" people left it out of their sentences.
Eats, Shoots & Leaves Illustrated Edition

I think this is why I found the book Eats, Shoots & Leaves (notice the omission of the Oxford/serial comma in the title) so absolutely fascinating and hilarious. Who knew a book of puncutation would have me laughing aloud more than once!

The author Lynne Truss remarks,

"There are people who embrace the Oxford comma and people who don't, and I'll just say this: never get between these people when drink has been taken."

She also tackles apostrophes, colons, semicolons, dashes, exclamation marks, question marks, quotation marks, parentheses, brackets, hyphens and dreaded emoticons such as:
      :-)
      :-o
      :-[

Anyone else out there think that punctuation had hard and fast rules??? Read this book and you'll be surprised.

P.S.- Did anyone notice I tried my hand at omitting the Oxford comma in a sentence above? It feels so uncompleted and just wrong!! I may have to re-edit this post. I just don't know if I can leave it as is...

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2 comments:

Kimberly said...

I admire you mommies who do the homeschool thing...I know it takes so much prep work! Following you from Blog Frog! ~Kimberly

www.stinkerpinker.com

Karen said...

I have always been a free-thinking rebel when it comes to punctuation and have never liked or used the Oxford Comma. It always felt unnecessary to me because the & did the connecting, so why an extra comma? The comma's job in these situations is to drag everyone along and the "and" does that for him @ the end of the list. Just never had no use for him myself. ;)

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