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…is today! It’s National Punctuation Day! Yay!

This hits me where I live. Editing, writing, and proofreading are where I make my extremely unlavish living, and you know, kids, you can’t do those things without a solid punctuation background.

So if you don’t know a colon from a semicolon or a comma from an apostrophe, if you have finally realized that the number of exclamation points used in a sentence is in direct reverse proportion to one’s IQ score, or if you want to learn all about how an ‘s does NOT make ANYTHING plural, you can read up on all things punctuatory (Is that a word? If not, it should be. Maybe punctuational? Punctual?) at You can even find a recipe for the Official Meatloaf of National Punctuation Day! Because if the warm, savory glow of question mark-shaped meatloaf doesn’t make you want to punctuate correctly, then I fear all hope is lost.


Picture, if you will, this little morning treat.

I woke Monday morning to a sick kid covered with hives. To give you an indication of how rotten he was feeling, he crawled in bed with me, curled up, and actually asked if we could go back to sleep. Aww. Anyway, I called and made a doctor’s appointment, decided to keep him home from the light-year pace of pre-k, and decided to plop him in front of the TV with fluids and do some much-needed cleaning. Let me reiterate: MUCH needed cleaning.

Mid-morning, I thought I saw a car pull into the driveway. This is never good. No one ever pulls into the driveway, except the Fed-Ex lady, one of us, or someone turning around. I assumed it was the latter, until I heard the knock on the door. I fully intended to ignore it, despite the blaring of Atlantis: The Lost Empire that clearly indicated occupation. My boy, however, lifted his head from the couch and bellowed, “Mommmmm! There’s someone at the door.” Sigh.

Let’s take stock in my appearance at that moment. Too-tight pajama shorts, wrinkled ugly T-shirt (I was cleaning, after all), gigantic thick glasses, hideously askew ponytail, braless, no makeup (the horror), and no lipstick (even more of a horror). I opened the door ever so slightly and was promptly met with….a religious tract.

This isn’t your standard tract, either. First of all, it actually calls itself a tract. Second, it tells me that joy and peace are possible the whole world over if I’m just willing to surrender my independent thought. The cover depicts the most Prozac-popping people you could possibly imagine doing peaceful things like petting lions and cuddling with tigers while a sheep and a wolf (or possibly a German Shepherd) look lovingly at a butterfly. Deer gambol gaily in the background while a family picks a bushel basket of what looks like lemons.

The inside says “A PEACEFUL NEW WORLD: Will It Come?” And, ahem… “When you look at the scene on this tract, what feelings do you have? Does not your heart yearn for the peace, happiness, and prosperity seen there? Surely it does. But is it just a dream, or fantasy [um, thanks for clarifying that], to believe that these conditions will ever exist on earth?”

So, aside from being written on a fifth-grade level (and quite possibly by Velvet Jones), this little brochure tells me that I can experience this lemon-picking, lion-stroking, butterfly-gazing delirious happiness if I become a Jehovah’s Witness. Okay, then. Nothing against the JW’s. You can believe whatever the heck you want. I do, however, have an issue with trying to turn the rest of the world to that belief and, if I may go a step further, bringing that belief directly to my doorstep and trying to pressure me into accepting it. That would be akin to my showing up on their doorsteps with, say, the latest Harry Potter book in hand and trying to tell them about it, or bringing by my favorite Beatles album and demanding they listen to it. It’s not the belief, it’s the method of dissemination. If I feel I need it, I’ll come looking. But sometimes, the things you cherish are best kept close, you know?

Anyway, I told her I had a sick kid and that we weren’t shopping around for anything new right now. But I promised that I would read the pamphlet and take it under advisement. And so I have. 😛

I’m beginning to think I don’t do nearly enough with my boy in the morning before he goes to school. The husband is home, sick, and Nicholas hasn’t dropped a syllable all morning.

Anyway, he’s flitting around, playing pirates, playing chef, playing all kinds of stuff, and he asked if he could make his dad some soup to help him feel better.

The offering…”Dad, let’s pretend I give you the soup, and it has roaches and eyeballs in it, and let’s pretend you think that’s ‘scusting.”

No need for pretending there.

Roaches AND eyeballs. Apparently both are needed to actually make it “‘scusting.”


September 2008
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