Wednesday, April 13, 2011


Disclosing information with appropriate hesitation

* Sometimes it is exactly the details which are mentioned between parentheses that give a narrative its biggest punch.
* For instance, for simple miracle #123, I wrote that peanut butter and jelly sandwiches were "an absolute staple." Had this been all I wrote, a reader might have been left to wonder, "What does he mean by 'staple'? Do he ever actually eat the sandwiches? Or is he just talking?" But then, I added, "(I had two today for lunch)." My assertions were substantiated! The parenthetical details made the difference!
* Alas, I did some research on other posts, and there is only one other post out of the last ten within which I have used parentheses. (The other was #125.) Perhaps I should increase my parenthesization!
* I am also attentive to how parentheses are used in Gmail email accounts. In the status bar at the top of the screen, it says "Gmail - Inbox" and this is it if you have no new messages. But, if you do have new messages, the bar says something like "Gmail - Inbox(1)". It is as though I am being told, "Yes, this is your inbox and you have a new message." Hooray! (Albeit, these parentheses are less relevant since I have given up checking my Gmail account during the day for Lent.)

1 comment:

Maria said...

You should right about semi-colons next. Remember how in college, that was virtually the only form of punctuation you used in your e-mails? ;-)

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