Do you read it as:
SLOW! CHILDREN AT PLAY!
meaning slow down because there are kids playing nearby?
Or is it:
SLOW CHILDREN AT PLAY!
meaning children who are slower than the rest of us are playing in the streets?
Now, that graphic makes it a little easier to interpret but what if you read this somewhere:
For me, it brings to mind paintings or photographs of flower vases and bowls of fruit.
What if it said:
What do you visualize then? Do you find yourself wanting to philosophize on the meaning of life? <big smile here>
I’ve been a natural proofreader for as long as I can remember. I’d barter proofreading a term paper in high school for a ride to the football game on Friday night. Even today, I still do a little proofreading – websites, proposals, blogs or what have you. If it has words, I’ll proof it. (This post really isn’t a marketing ploy but just my rant on punctuation – or the lack of it.) So, yes, punctuation done wrong can really bug me. The use of apostrophes can be particularly ugly.
How many of us have seen this on a sign outside a coffee shop somewhere?
COME INSIDE FOR YOUR LATTE’S & MOCHA’S!
Or this one at the corner grocery store?
ONE DOZEN EGG’S – $2
I especially don’t want to pull up someone’s website and see the commas MIA, the sentences running together all willy-nilly and the apostrophes looking like they became rabbits, multiplying all over the place with abandon. If this is you, too, you’ll love this little book by Lynn Truss – Eat, Shoots & Leaves: The Zero Tolerance Approach to Punctuation. It’s one of my favorites! She writes with a British humor that will keep you reading through this short book on punctuation just because it’s so darned funny…. even if you hate commas and semi-colons! It’s a quick read but one that will bring a smile to your lips and a chuckle to your belly. Seems we could all use a few extra smiles and chuckles these days – I know I do!
And my disclaimer on the punctuation usage in this post – I’m just trying to make a point here… nothing’s perfect! Or is that nothings’ perfect?