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Archive for December, 2007

Why I love my marriage

Last night Mason and I went to Z Tejas for dinner because I really wanted their pecan-crusted chicken salad. Over the course of the evening we had a heated debate about — wait for it– the serial comma.  That’s right, the comma that comes before the “and” in a list. We debated it. Don’t you wish you were as cool as we are?

Anywho, he’s reading Eats, Shoots and Leaves right now and is pro-serial comma, while I think it should only be used when necessary for clarity. Such as Hilary’s comment below: I’d like to thank my parents, Ayn Rand and Jesus. This sentence is quite confusing without the comma. I support its use here.

But I won’t bore you with the details of our debate. Let it be known however, that I’m really glad I found someone who a) knows what a serial comma is and b) willingly — nay, eagerly — debated its use with me.

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This week, I’m carrying a lemon!

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I wrote a blog for World Magazine for a few years, as some of you know. World is a weekly Christian news magazine. The hard part about blogging for a magazine is that you always feel like you have to have A Point to every post, and include a Deep Thought. You can’t (or at least I never felt comfortable doing so) just write about what’s going on day-to-day. It’s one of the reasons I eventually stopped writing for them.

Anyway, one day I asked a question I thought was completely relevant and would garner lots of responses. After all, it had A Point, and besides, most World readers are strongly opinionated Christians, many of the evangelical persuasion.

I asked people to tell me why they believed what they believed, re: religion. And you know how many answers I got? Zero. I was quite surprised. I suppose the reason could be that no one felt like writing that day. But I think there’s something more. I think it’s a really hard question to answer. I would like anyone reading this to indulge me and tell me why you believe what you believe. Were you raised in a certain religion? Did you “convert” at some point in your life? Do you not believe in anything, or not know what you believe? Do you not know the answer to my question?

Whatever your answer is, I’d love to hear it. If you don’t know, please tell me that, too.

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New ultrasound pic

I got three of them last week, but this one’s my favorite because it shows a distinct profile.

babytop.jpg

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Sticklers, unite!

I recently read Eats, Shoots and Leaves and LOVED it. As someone who spends most of her days writing and editing, it was a joy to read a book by someone who also cringes at signs that read “Come inside for CD’s, DVD’s, Book’s, and Video’s.”

Lynne Truss is quite disturbed by the way proper punctuation is going to hell in a handbasket, thanks to IMs, e-mails and the like. But what I like about this book is that she doesn’t just rant, she explains why punctuation is important. Here’s my favorite example, regarding the placement of the comma (stick with me here; it’s not nearly as boring as it sounds).

Consider the huge doctrinal differences between these two sentences (Luke 23:43), solely because of the comma placement:

“Verily, I say unto thee, This day thou shalt be with me in Paradise.”

“Verily I say unto thee this day, Thou shalt be with me in Paradise.”

Here’s what Truss says: “The first version, which is how Protestants interpret the passage, lightly skips over the unpleasant business of Purgatory and takes the crucified thief straight to heaven with Our Lord. The second promises Paradise at some later date (to be confirmed, as it were) and leaves Purgatory nicely in the picture for the Catholics, who believe in it.”

See? Thousands of years of dissent could have been avoided if the Hebrews had just used punctuation, instead of rows and rows of un-punctuated words. They unfortunately left the interpretation up to the rest of us, leading to the aforementioned dissent.

The point is, you never know when your improper punctuation could lead to eons of fighting between religious groups. So learn how to use a comma (and apostrophe, and semicolon, etc.), for heaven’s sake (ha!). Future generations will thank you.

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