Jan 062016
 

You really need a full-time proofreader.

I really do. My grammar and punctuation skills are sorely lacking.

This is brilliant, but I’m still on the “there are times we need the Oxford comma” side. Sometimes restructuring the sentence isn’t the best answer.

The Oxford comma is the comma before the and in a list. For example; I need milk, eggs, and butter to make cookies. This is the way I was taught to write a list in school and it has taken me a long time to break this habit. Much like the double space after a period, it’s engrained in my head.

There are times that the Oxford comma is useful in clearing up a sentence. For example; I invited my family, Mary and Steve. Now let’s say that Mary and Steve are friends, not family. Reading the sentence, it is assumed that Mary and Steve are family and the only people invited when I actually invited my entire family along with Mary and Steve. If you add the Oxford comma the sentence becomes clearer. I invited my family, Mary, and Steve. 

This sentence can be rewritten for clarity. I invited Mary, Steve and my family. While I agree in this case, I believe there are cases when rewriting the sentence changes the impact. For example; I love my kids, Dan and Steve. Here, it looks like both Dan and Steve are my kids. Let’s say Dan and Steve are my brothers. I could rewrite it, I love Dan, Steve and my kids, but I wanted my kids listed first because emphasis needs to be placed on the love for my kids. Maybe I love my kids above all else. Without separating it into multiple sentences, I can solve the problem with the Oxford Comma. I love my kids, Dan, and Steve. 

It could be rewritten another way. Maybe; I love my kids more than anything, but I also love Dan and Steve. To me, that makes Dan and Steve more of an afterthought or of lesser importance than I meant for them to be. 

Either way, I’m sure the debate will continue for a long time to come. I just try to avoid the Oxford comma whenever I can.

Enough about the Oxford comma… on to Word Crimes!

Sep 152014
 

I babysat for my grandson for the first time! It was also the first time Mommy and baby were separated for any length of time, but Mommy did very well. She didn’t call to check up once.

It was only for a few hours, but we had some giggly, bubbly fun! This time, I took video!

May 282011
 

Storm footage taken in Topeka, KS on May 21, 2011. This tornado outbreak started on May 21st, lasted until May 26th, and covered many states. There were 133 confirmed tornadoes and 156 deaths.

In this video you can see cloud rotation and several tornadoes attempting to form. It is unclear if any reached the ground, but a tornado was spotted on the ground in Topeka around the time this footage was taken.

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