Punctuation is your friend

Noted. Snapped and shared by Cliff Pickover.


    1. As a foreigner who only know English learnt from a fairly distant time college class, I can assure you it may be hard, at times, to understand the meaning from sentences lacking a correct punctuation (as much as it may be difficult for you to understand what I tried to say here ;o)  ).

  1. Technically speaking it IS possible that a fair number of such people exists.

    /The only person that might automatically get disqualified is Adam.

    //Not that he ever existed.

    1. Holy crap your comment is so cutting and edgy I’m getting dizzy from blood loss.  Your pregnant disabled elderly mother must be so proud.

  2. I like how ONLY is capitalized.  It’s like they’re saying the following people are allowed to use it ONLY as a toilet.

    1. As Wreckrob says, this is not an issue of punctuation. There are several problems here. First, there’s no parallel form: when joining items in a series, they generally need to be of the same category, but here we’ve got three adjectives and a noun. You also can’t have an adjective as the object of a preposition, so even if ‘children’ was changed to ‘young’, you’d still have an issue. There’s also no conjunction. A simple ‘and’ would make the comical interpretation of the sentence impossible. Semicolons might make things clearer, but it would be nonstandard usage.

      1. Actually it is a list of four substantives, two of which can function as adjectives or nouns, one only as an adjective and one only as a noun and which would need complete rewriting. The context makes the meaning clear.

        No guerrilla punctuationistas required here!

        Where’s that panda when you need him?

  3. That would make excellent fodder for ultra-conservative pundits.

    “What has Obama given us in his first four years as President?  Disabled, elderly, pregnant children.  And, with Obamacare, you get to support them, Taxpayer!”

    Warm up the bumper sticker machine.

  4. A restaurant next to where I work has a lunchroom.

    In that lunchroom a sign reads:


    How long am I supposed to wait?

        1. sure, especially if it comes with Moroccan food, yum!!!

          my favorite trick which i’ve seen a few times, is when they stack the tea cups either in a huge pyramid or on their bodies and pour all that yummy green/mint tea. :-)

          but even without the sword belly dancing, the hand washing, the tea pouring, or the sitting on the ground, i’d still go, because the food, damn the food is good.

  5. The bigger question is this – why the limitations at all? If my bladder is in uproar while I’m picking up Jaffa Cakes at the local Safeway or whatever, why do I need to be in some way disabled to relieve myself?

    Maybe there’s another toilet reserved for the more able customers? But then the sign should specify “this” toilet is only for the disabled, elderly, pregnant, and children!

    Now if you’ll excuse me, I need the loo.

  6. But what if Im an old handicapped children with child? Your cruel.

    I’m just realizing, it hurts to write with bad grammar and spelling.
    The freckled kid with the flannel cap and earflaps in Fat Albert yells between my ears, “NC – No Class”… Russell is his name!

  7.  That bathroom must be incredibly clean. 

    There’s a sign in my neighbourhood that asks to “please feed no water fowel”.  And since they ask so nicely, maybe I would, but there are always some ducks, swans and gulls present, so I feed them instead. 

  8. now that we have the toilets attention only, we can thank it for shopping with us (not in our store).  i always shop with a toilet, it picks out the best produce, and nothing says thank you like 3 !!!

    if i was a lady, i’d totally use this washroom whenever i pleased, who are they to say if i’m pregnant or not.  i just might not be showing.

  9. All right, so, at the top of this page, what on earth are “features podcasts family video comics music tech science books”? Those sound like interesting books, but shouldn’t “features”, “podcasts”, and “comics” each drop the terminal  S to be proper adjectives?

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