Friday, May 04, 2007

And the winner is ...

This week's Pav's Coffee All Over the Keyboard Media Award, which we hope to make a regular weekly feature if we can get that many laughs, goes to Simon Hughes for his report on the Logies in today's Crikey:

'But now -- the envelope please (I may want it to be sick into later).'

Mr Hughes receives the award partly because he made Pav laugh on an otherwise unfunny day but also for his correct placement of the full stop outside the closing parenthesis.

8 comments:

tigtog said...

I'm constantly astonished by the number of people who have no trouble nesting commands in code who still have trouble nesting punctuation. They probably overuse ellipses, too.

Dean said...

Placement of punctuation is, for me, a critical issue. If only the Greens would make it part of their legislative platform...

genevieve said...

Hughes' TV columns for Teh Age were always well written.
welcome to the CAOTK award, too. Sounds very promising indeed.

Pavlov's Cat said...

When you put it like that, Genevieve, it does actually sound rather like someone coughing up a furball into an envelope.

Anonymous said...

Overuse ellipses?

...oh dear...

ThirdCat said...

What anonymous said. But I'm pretty carefuly about where I put the full stop.s

ashleigh said...

Hey Pav - the Australian Governments "Style Manual for Authors, Editors and Printers" goes into the placement of the full stop in some detail.

In this context, the use is correct. There are some cases where the full stop is permitted inside the brackets. (But they are rare.)

:)

As for the ellipses, the overuse most likely stems from the use of smileys and so on :( and reflects a desire to convey in words a sort of trailing off into... erm... nothing really. Like we often do in conversation.

Pavlov's Cat said...

Ashleigh: exactly, and thanks for the reference, for which many people may be grateful and which I recommend, though similar manuals can be got from various publishers and academic associations.

In fact, because I feared people would think I meant this was 'the rule' rather than what was correct in that instance, I originally posted a long disquisition about discrete (as distinct from discreet) sentences, and punctuation being part of grammar, and so on and so forth ad nauseam, and then trashed it because not even I could either understand it or stay awake till the end of it.

Also, it was bound to attract flamers. (Unlike your fair self full stop end parenthesis

ALTERNATIVELY PUNCTUATED VERSION: Also, it was bound to attreact flamers (unlike your fair self end parenthesis full stop

For simliar reasons, I won't be going into the punctuation of dialogue, which is more complicated again.

Overuse of ellipses, alas, long pre-dates smileys, which only came in post-electronic keyboard -- the great food writer MFK Fisher sprinkles them liberally all over her pages, and was doing so back before World War 2 ... =^^=