Monday, December 08, 2014

comma sense

Who says punctuation doesn't matter?

Don't get me wrong. Although I posture as a purist, I recognize, mostly through texting, that we humans who speak English tend to figure things out, despite missing apostrophes, periods, commas, whatnot. And I thought I heard in my linguistics course decades ago that simplification in language is actually a mark of sophistication. (I would have to research that now; comments invited to affirm, explain, or invalidate that assertion.)

On the black-pepper grinder and shaker, the instructions declare:


followed by directions for counterclockwise hand turnings for coarser or finer results.

Imagine adding a comma:


as in:

to adjust to your quotidian challenges, grind through them, yielding either coarser or finer results, peppery or not, seasoning your day, discovering its flavor and zest despite any blandness or bitterness.

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