7 Brilliant Posts About Punctuation for National Punctuation Day

BlogHer Original Post

Happy National Punctuation Day! If you don't know the Tironian et, the manicule, and the percontation mark—or you haven't heard the punctuation playlist or the argument for abolishing the apostrophe—read this list to celebrate in style. (Get it? Style?)

#1. This genius playlist of punctuation-related songs by Jodi of I Will Dare. I love it!

(Side note: I have been wanting to take a red pen to the Elvis Costello song title "Everyday I Write the Book" for decades. "Everyday" as one word is an adjective, not an adverb. ELVIS, LISTEN TO MY PLEA.)

#2. Sonja of Pintester actually did pick up her red pen to correct the capitalization and punctuation on a snarky word-snob T-shirt. Brilliant.

#3. My personal favorite punctuation song (I guess this is a thing now) is less rock, more humor: Behold the genius that is "Semicolon" by Lonely Island, featuring Solange. Don't have a coronary until you watch through to the punch line at the end:

#4. Keith Houston of Shady Characters posted a fascinating history of obsolete punctuation on Huffington Post. The Tironian et! The manicule! The percontation mark!

#5. That was fun. Now, please pause a moment and breathe, because this list is about to get real. Linguist James Harbeck is arguing for the total elimination of the apostrophe from the English language. I feel for the poor copy editor who had to work on this piece; to make his point, Harbeck wrote the entire screed without apostrophes. Discuss, please. (Don't judge Harbeck too harshly, apostrophe fans, without first taking a look at his defense of the semicolon and his incredible blog of "word tasting notes," Sesquiotica.)

#6-7. I think we need to end with a palate cleanser or two. Enter McSweeney's and its delightful diptych, A Field Guide to Uncommon Punctuation and A Field Guide to Common Punctuation. The red-spotted interrobang! The Western colon! (Note: I took the liberty of changing the original posts' punctuation. Though common names of fauna are conventionally capitalized within specialized publications, for general audiences they should be considered common nouns, with only the proper nouns within the vernacular name capitalized. Ahem.)

How are you celebrating National Punctuation Day?

Exclamation Point Woman
Baffling image by Mia Judkins via Flickr

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