Thursday, September 24, 2009

Exclaiming Over Errant Ellipses

Think an ellipsis is when the moon moves in front of the sun?
~ On

Sometimes I think I live in a cave. After all, how could I have been an editor for more than 30 years and just today have learned about Californian Jeff Rubin's "National Punctuation Day"? National Punctuation Day, no less [my emphasis added]!

You think, maybe, it's because I was just too busy querying misplaced apostrophes, putting semicolons in their place, erasing errant ellipses, and trying to get staff writers to figure out the difference between "you're" and "your"?

Or, when my son was in grammar [LOL] school, it was left to me to explain that when I say, " 'Miami', you needn't raise the question, 'Yurami?' to make sure you understand what I'm asking." [My son's become an excellent writer, by the way.]

According to a column in today's Washington Post, errors vying for Top Punctuation Mistake Awards are misuse of apostrophes, failure to use serial commas, lack of knowledge of where to place semicolons, and out-of-control insertion of dashes.

My experience shows that even Harvard graduates can't master these finer points. And Rubin can teach semicolon use to third graders in 30 minutes?


Grammar fanatics, this day is all yours. Celebrate!

Now, I've got to dash.

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