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Friday, July 16, 2010

Two Dots, One Diacritic

Posted By on July 16, 2010, 2:46 PM

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Note: This blog post was flagged as "offensive" on Facebook. I don't really get it, but you have been warned. The block has now been sensibly removed.

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Confession: I've got a colon fetish.

There's just something about that dirty little punctuation mark: I get a thrill every time I use it to introduce an appositive sentence. It brings pleasure in many situations: lists, definitions, logical conclusions, etc.

I think my obsession started during my 8th-grade obsession with Bel Kaufman, whose epistolary writing style made use of all the punctuation marks. Through the years, even as it became obvious the colon was falling into disuse, I continued defiantly pecking away at it. Nobody was using the colon, and every time I inserted it, I felt like a dinosaur -- but I liked it somehow.

Now, according to Conor J. Dillon, the colon is undergoing something of a renaissance. And I suppose that must mean my campaign to keep its use alive has been justified. I was colon when colon wasn't cool.


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