Saturday, July 9, 2011

Who Gives a F*ck About an Oxford Comma? Me.

Oxford University's Style Guide just decided to drop the Oxford comma, or serial comma. If you don't know what I'm talking about it is the comma that often has come before the final "and" in a sentence (among other examples). Most lazy business folk abstain for using it -- probably out of efficiency (wankers). While working for a well known auto parts manufacturer in the General Counsel's Office, here in Va., I have often encountered such non-usage. Given my legal education, and constant use of the serial comma, I often found it irritating when some over-priced executive would write up a report, which I had to double-check for its legality, leaving out the serial comma. Many times I found myself editing the serial comma into various places where the slack-jawed business school graduate would omit it.

Listen, it is not that hard to add the Oxford comma into the sequence of sentence endings. Moreover, and most importantly, it is a fool-proof way of being absolutely clear. Granted, it is not that hard - at lest for those who have a legal education - to recognize the separation without the Oxford comma (and, therefore, clear meaning of the ending sequence) at the final point of the sentence. This, however, is not the point. The fact is, the serial comma is very helpful and, in fact, much more clear than without it; especially for the common man. It should stay in the Oxford Style Guide; and, regardless, those (which are many) who are like me will continue to use it, as it rightfully deserves to be used.

Who gives a f*ck about the Oxford comma? Well, Vampire Weekend (of course) . . . and so do I.