Monday, April 25, 2011

On underuse of punctuation

First of all. Underuse? Under use? Under-use?

Secondly, that first paragraph (is it a paragraph when it is just four extremely short sentences that don't exceed one line brake?), and for that matter this one, is (are?) certainly no example(s?) of underuse/under use/under-use of punctuation. You see, I tend to overuse/over use/over-use punctuation. That's right. My name is Cruella, and I am a punctuation addict.

I am not picky, but my drug of choice is the parenthesis (in fact, I think I need one right now). I like my brackets raw, I like them cooked (and crooked [or straight {or even moustachey}]). If out of parentheses, however, I also enjoy dashes - or hyphens since I'm too lazy to figure out how to make proper dashes in blogger - and I can't turn down the occasional semicolon; even if I don't know how to use them; properly.

Due to the unhealthiness of this addiction, however, I have decided to try to beat it. I'm thinking cold turkey.
Thus, starting from the next paragraph, there will be no punctuation. I realize this will be annoying, but I hope you all understand my reason for doing this. It really is time I break a bad habit.

So oh no I already have the need for a parenthesis since I wanted to explain that my lack of punctuation doesn't include or exclude capital letters and apostrophes because I don't really count that as punctuation since it in the case of capital letters isn't and in the case of apostrophes doesn't really give me much buzz besides the readability without them is severely reduced here comes another nonparenthesis and that should have been a hyphen but it'll have to do I'm watching Monty Python in the background and oh boy oh boy the Norwegian Blue sketch is on and it is hilarious as always but now the lack of exclamation points in that statement almost belittled it and no one should ever belittle the Norwegian Blue which is a parrot that has ceased to be I really want and ellipsis after that and a comma before this but alas I cannot.

Ack! I failed! Relapse on a full stop!! And now I can't stop using these exclamation points!!!!!!!!!

It's useless. I guess I'll have to live with being a punctuation junkie. At least this post served to convince me that it is probably actually "under used", but as I think this is slightly misleading (since it could be confused with "used" being physically "under" something), I'm still gonna go with under-used. It also allows me an extra punctuation mark. Mmmm..!!!???)(----]!.

18 comments:

welcome to my world of poetry said...

I'm not good with punctuation, but I try my best.
Loved your post very much and interseting as always.
Yvonne.

sue said...

SOL ;)

Jules said...

You are the best kind of nut, the one that makes us laugh. :)
Jules @ Trying To Get Over The Rainbow

LL Cool Joe said...

I never think about punctuation, until someone doesn't use it.

When it doubt add a full stop. :D

LL Cool Joe said...

In, I mean. see now you've done it!

LL Cool Joe said...

Ok now I've forgotten a capital letter!!! And all these exclamation points!!!!

I'm going ...

mooderino said...

Cormac McCarthy writes with hardly any punctuation. It takes a little getting used to but you sort of get into the swing of it.

Great post! (couldn't resist throwing a few more in).

mood
Moody Writing

Cold As Heaven said...

My favorite is the semicolon >;)

Cold As Heaven

Stephanie V said...

I'm still laughing - that was wonderful!
I love punctuation and, often, the lack thereof. It makes for character in writing.
BTW, my favorite punctuation seems to be the elliptical dots. I find myself doing it all the time...

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Blame the Monty Python skit...

Ann said...

I am semi colon illiterate, comma addicted and a habitual exclamation mark exclaimer.

Holly Ruggiero said...

Mine is the comma. It's either under or over.

Kelly said...

Please. Tell me when and where the next meeting of POA (Punctuation Overusers Anonymous) will be held. I need to confront my addiction in a friendly atmosphere!

~Sia McKye~ said...

Lolol! I do use punctuation, for the most part. I'm also fond of em dashes and use them more than I should.

RosieC said...

Dear Cruella,
You crack me up EVERY time. Stop. That was hysterical. Stop. Thanks. Smiley.

:) Rosie

Rebecca Dupree said...

GREAT POST!!!!!! I have to admit--I read it twice!!!!

Boonie S said...

You’ve brought me to a full stop on this one…..

Have a good week, Boonie

Cruella Collett said...

Yvonne - At least in poetry you're allowed to blame the poetic license, eh, even for punctuation ;)

Sue - Tee hee, SOL indeed. In every possible meaning of the word ("sol" = sun in Norwegian, and we've had lots and lots of it here this week)

Jules - Good thing you're not allergic ;)

Joe - !!!!!!! ;)

Mood - Yes, Jose Saramago too. I'm not overly fond of that style, even if I can stretch to admit understanding how it might have a function. But I still don't *like* it. Maybe my junkie heart cannot take it?

CAH - The Oxford Comma! I wish I was more confident in how to use one, though. Outside of smileys ;)

Stephanie - If used right, I can acknowledge under-use of punctuation as a stylistic element that indeed can be a character-defining trait. But I have a hard time getting used to it when reading.

Alex - I do, I do! That parrot has gone to meet its maker!

Ann - *snort* I think we're in the same club! <-- See!!

Holly - It is difficult, to get it, just right, isn't it? Sometimes I want to add commas all the time and sometimes I don't want any at all for no particular reason. (Though that last sentence was hard...)

Kelly - Hahaha, I will definitely tell you. I guess acknowledging that we have a problem is probably the first step...

Sia - Yeah, me too. If I could get away with it - but I really can't - I'd add dashes in every sentence - at least once.

Rosie - Dear Rosie, I am VERY glad to hear that. Stop. I also think it is oddly fulfilling to use telegram-lingo as a substitute (or addition) to actual punctuation. Stop.

Rebecca - I bet you really dreaded the non-punctuation paragraph the second time, though. It gets annoying, right? We NEED punctuation!

Boonie - I'm just glad I didn't bring you to a question mark! Have a great week yourself! :)

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