April 24, 2012 smz-blog

Let’s Eat Grandma.

– Trish Cowan, Copywriter

Wait—is she properly seasoned?

One little comma changes the meaning of the whole sentence, doesn’t it? Since proofreading is part of my game here at SMZ, I admit, nerd that I am, it’s the kind of stuff I pay attention to.

Let’s eat, grandma.

In this world of texting, tweeting, Facebook and emails, punctuation and spelling often take a back seat. But it’s still important stuff. Like they say, “Retail is detail.” And though we break some rules now and then, Strunk and White’s is best to be followed. Because without them, sentences can be misread. Something that’s bound to matter to a client.

So can a comma really save lives? A punctuation pundit like me thinks so. But don’t just take my word. Ask granny.

Comments (3)

  1. Thanks for dusting off a classic that never gets old, nor loses its “sticky” power to instruct.

    I also like a similar chestnut with a needlessly inserted comma that also change the meaning. The panda eats, shoots and leaves.

    Nice to start the day with smiles and punctuation reminders.

      • Another comma-missing headline is now causing amusement via social media. ‘Tails’ magazine for pet owners shows a well-known Food Network host and this type:

        Rachel Ray
        finds inspiration
        in cooking
        her family
        and her dog

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