Thursday, August 20, 2009

The Punctuation Avenger!

I was listening to BBC Radio yesterday, and they had a story about 62-year-old Stefan Gatward, a Kent resident who finally lost his temper over the incorrectly-punctuated sign on the end of his street ("St Johns Close") and painted in an apostrophe.

Anyway, the BBC wanted to know what their listeners thought: was it too nit-picky, or did Mr. Gatward have a valid complaint*? I'm no grammar expert, but I am a big fan of the apostrophe, so I was very happy to hear that nearly everyone they polled supported Mr. Gatward's position--particularly because my doom-and-gloom mother frequently tells me that we're all moving towards a new, punctuation-free future, and I better get over it or I'm going to give myself a headache.

So there, Mom.

*The expert opinion featured in the BBC story also pointed out that until we have an inflexion-based way of communicating the difference between statements like "the pills' effects are dangerous" and "the pill's effects are dangerous", we might want to be careful about dumping time-honored stylistic flourishes.)

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5 Comments:

Blogger Sheryl said...

The expert opinion featured in the BBC story also pointed out that until we have an inflexion-based way of communicating the difference between statements like "the pills' effects are dangerous" and "the pill's effects are dangerous", we might want to be careful about dumping time-honored stylistic flourishes.
Ha ha! Yes! I am glad that the value of proper punctuation is still recognized in some circles.

1:22 PM

 
Anonymous anna said...

Indeed. Good grammar costs nothing!c

2:53 PM

 
Blogger Marie said...

Anna- yes, and yet it is so valuable when it comes to effective communication!

7:34 PM

 
Anonymous Natalia Maldonado said...

I was so happy when I read this. You don't know how many times I've been tempted to do this myself!

12:34 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

And his little apostrophe looks so nice!

9:04 AM

 

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