A breakdown of the differences between these two styles would be a good post, but instead I’m just going to share some lighthearted Friday fun with you.
Brought to you by the hilarious brilliance of the Onion:
Too cute not to share. Who would ever think of writing a short story about a comma’s woes? Answer: this blogger.
The comma stood on the corner, bleating, “Please, can someone help me? I know I belong somewhere, but I can’t quite remember where.”
Devon Taylor, copy editor, sat at the counter of the diner counter across the street and watched as passers-by skittered around the pitiful punctuation mark. They looked away determined to not notice it.
Devon (destined to become The Nib) couldn’t really blame them. Commas were notoriously slippery creatures. But there was something about this comma that made Devon think it was truly in trouble.
The editor set down the empty coffee cup and wandered across the street.
“What brings you to Conjunctionville?” Devon asked the punctuation mark.
“Oh! Thank you for helping,” the comma was practically hopping. “I think I’m supposed to meet a couple of independent clauses for a job, but I can’t remember all the details. It was supposed to be…
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Me too. And what makes it extra confusing? The fact that different style guides recommend capitalizing different words. Let’s review one of the big guys: Associated Press, also known as AP style.
Apostrophes can be tricksters, and one of the trickier uses of them is possession versus description. According to some sources, including the AP Style Guide, some nouns merely describe the noun that comes after them. For example:
The boys team. According to AP style, “boys” describes the word “team,” but the boys don’t necessarily possess the team.