Punctuation Saves Lives

Punctuation Saves Lives

photocredit: lumenlearning.com

BY: RACHEL WUMKES

It’s National Punctuation Day! And while it may seem like a boring, random, completely non-important day for most of the population, it really is important for everyone.  The holiday was created by Jeff Rubin in 2004 to emphasize the vital role of punctuation marks in written English.

Without punctuation, our lives would be one gigantic run-on sentence, riddled with multiple meanings and, honestly, making some rather disturbing sentences.

And while the true celebration of this holiday is for the purpose of writing, I believe it can be applied to the verbal aspect as well.  The emphasis you may put on a word, knowing there would be a comma involved can vary and change with your tone as you speak.

For example:  Grandma comes to town for a visit.  You are so excited to take her for a cruise down South Shore Drive.  Her stomach begins to rumble, so you pull into the quaint parking lot of South Shore Donut Company for a delicious Mixwich.  As you sit at the table, situating the napkin on your lap to prevent spills, you look up at Grandma and say, “Let’s eat, Grandma!”

However, if you’d have said, “Let’s eat Grandma!” it may have been a very awkward lunch for everyone involved.

The internet is riddled with images stating the need for punctuation in our lives.  One of my favorites included the argument of if the comma really serves a purpose in everyday use.

I bet Grandma thinks it does!

Without it, a simple phrase stating what you enjoy most in the world can become a bit morbid.  What if your three favorite things were cooking, family, and your pets?  If you simply said, “I like cooking my family and my pets” you might have some serious issues.  Issues that land you in jail, probably wearing one of those fancy white jackets.

Yikes!

I’m guessing Clear Lake Community Schools also is a big fan of National Punctuation Day.  I can’t imagine the preschool teachers listing the day’s activities on the chalkboard without using commas.  I’m assuming “We’re going to cut and paste kids” would not be very well received by students or their parents.

You see? Punctuation is important.  Commas are vital for the well-being and safety of not only Grandma, but our children!

And thankfully, I’ve never seen the below sign in any of our amazing Clear Lake restaurants.

Somebody needs a lesson in quotation marks and how to use them.  Seriously.  Unnecessary punctuation can be JUST as disturbing as not using punctuation!

So while you may have originally thought National Punctuation Day was just another random, fluff day made up for no reason, hopefully now you can see the importance.

I think Grandma would want you to use the comma!

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