He asked me if he needed to use a colon or semi-colon. I was glad to tell him what to do. (It happens so seldom.)
I just discovered there is an entire day dedicated to the use of punctuation. September 24 is National Punctuation Day. The NPD Web site offers a recipe for the Official Meatloaf of the Day. (David would make mine with ground fake meat.) Make it in the shape of your favorite punctuation.
The Web site also offers suggestion on how to celebrate the day. A few ideas:
- Take a leisurely stroll, paying close attention to store signs with incorrectly punctuated words.
- Stop in those stores to correct the owners.
- If the owners are not there, leave notes.
My family is well aware of my obsession with grammar and punctuation. There is a restaurant in Utah that will forever be remembered as "the one with the incorrect use of an apostrophe on the sign." (It also will be remembered for "very slow service from a perfectly nice waitress.") For the record, I did not leave a note or point it out to the manager. It was Mother's Day and he had many other pressing issues, like feeding all of the mothers in the room. I cannot speak to whether Valerie might have taken the matter into her own hands after our departure.
I cannot say the same about the note in the ladies room at the local movie theater.
Feel free to visit the Web site and see some of the punctuation errors caught on film and posted for all to see. Laugh with them — only because you might cry at the egregious errors.
And remember: you can do it! Punctuation is not rocket science. It's communication, and that's even more important. (Without communication, how could you learn about rocket science?) It is something we all can understand and use correctly so our communication is clear.
Now, go out and do your part: punctuate well!