Tag Archives: Oxford comma

Bar Jokes for English Majors

 

I am once again thankful to FOAF (friend of a friend).  These are too good not to post.  They come from the bluebird of bitterness blog and the image from the story reading ape blog to which I give credit.*

Bar jokes english major

 

A dangling participle walks into a bar. Enjoying a cocktail and chatting with the bartender, the evening passes pleasantly.

 

A bar was walked into by the passive voice.

 

An oxymoron walked into a bar, and the silence was deafening.

 

Two quotation marks walk into a “bar.”

 

A malapropism walks into a bar, looking for all intensive purposes like a wolf in cheap clothing, muttering epitaphs and casting dispersions on his magnificent other, who takes him for granite.

 

Hyperbole totally rips into this insane bar and absolutely destroys everything.

 

A question mark walks into a bar?

 

A non sequitur walks into a bar. In a strong wind, even turkeys can fly.

 

Papyrus and Comic Sans walk into a war. The bartender says, “Get out — we don’t serve your type.”

 

A mixed metaphor walks into a bar, seeing the handwriting on the wall but hoping to nip it in the bud.

 

A comma splice walks into a bar, it has a drink and then leaves.

 

Three intransitive verbs walk into a bar. They sit. They converse. They depart.

 

A synonym strolls into a tavern.

 

At the end of the day, a cliché walks into a bar — fresh as a daisy, cute as a button, and sharp as a tack.

 

A run-on sentence walks into a bar it starts flirting. With a cute little sentence fragment.

 

Falling slowly, softly falling, the chiasmus collapses to the bar floor.

 

A figure of speech literally walks into a bar and ends up getting figuratively hammered.

 

An allusion walks into a bar, despite the fact that alcohol is its Achilles heel.

 

The subjunctive would have walked into a bar, had it only known.

 

A misplaced modifier walks into a bar owned a man with a glass eye named Ralph.

 

The past, present, and future walked into a bar. It was tense.

 

A dyslexic walks into a bra.

 

A verb walks into a bar, sees a beautiful noun, and suggests they conjugate. The noun declines.

 

An Oxford comma walks into a bar, where it spends the evening watching the television getting drunk and smoking cigars.

 

A simile walks into a bar, as parched as a desert.

 

A gerund and an infinitive walk into a bar, drinking to forget.

 

A hyphenated word and a non-hyphenated word walk into a bar and the bartender nearly chokes on the irony.

 


*A footnote reference walks into a bar and has no cash.  The bartender gives him credit.

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Dr. Language Guy Confesses

Dr LG Confesses

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Penitent Dr. LG:  Forgive me Father for I have sinned.

Reproachful Priest:  How long has it been since your last confession?

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Penitent Dr. LG:  Uh… well… it’s been a while.

Reproachful Priest:  That is okay, my son.  Tell me of your sins.

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Penitent Dr. LG:

Oh Father my sins are many.  I have tried to serve as a language maven but I have given misguided directions to my followers.  I have instructed them in better writing and diction but I have fallen victim to doubts and uncertainty.  I am beckoned by the siren calls of language change against which I have asked them to resist.  Not only that, these ideas seem to me quite normal and ones that should be incorporated into modern writing in place of their more stylistic but perhaps dated earlier forms.

Reproachful Priest:  ?

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Penitent Dr. LG:  Let me give you some examples of my transgressions.  I speak of the Oxford comma, the placement of quotation marks inside punctuation marks, and the split infinitive.

Reproachful Priest:  ??

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Penitent Dr. LG:

I’ll start with the Oxford comma.  As you may know, the Oxford comma (also called the Harvard comma or serial comma) is a comma placed immediately before the coordinating conjunction (usually and, or, or nor) in a series of three or more terms.  For example, we may punctuate three items as “A, B, and C” (with the serial comma) or “A, B and C” (without the serial comma).  Long have I railed against the use of the serial comma as unnecessary.  While the Associated Press Stylebook advises against it, many other style guides like The Chicago Manual of Style, Strunk and White’s Elements of Style, and the U.S. Government Printing Office Style Manual advocate its use.  How can I disagree with such an auspicious group?1

1 portions excerpted from Wikipedia

Then there is the placement of punctuation marks outside of quotation marks.  I have been told that “periods and commas always go inside quotation marks, even inside single quotes.”  Yet, fewer and fewer writers do this and I have a hard time explaining why they should.  Isn’t it easier to let the quotation marks set off the quoted or emphasized phrase and then end with the terminating punctuation mark?  Oh I fear these voices.

These same voices tell me that it matters not that I split my infinitives!  Is it any improvement or difference, they say, “to go boldy” than “to boldy go” where no writer has gone before?  The evil voices are winning, Father, they are winning.

Oh and I don’t even want to tell you how I refuse to give up the long-established habit of placing two spaces instead of one between sentences.  I know it’s wasteful of space but I cannot help but believe it gives better readability and I’m here to confess these and many other sins too numerous to mention.

Reproachful Priest:  [After a long pause]  I believe that you are at the wrong confessional, my son.

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Penitent Dr. LG:  Well, did I confess to you about how I once thought that Steven Seagal was a good actor?

Reproachful Priest:  I’m listening…