The Supercomma

I brought my copy of Warriner’s English Grammar and Composition into the office to see if I could relearn any 8th Grade Grammar; the text fell open to the first page of the chapter on semicolons.

According to Warriner I use a semicolon exactly like a cross between a comma and a period; the pause for a semicolon is longer than a comma but shorter than a period. Typesetters or punctuation mark inventors baked the instructions in to the symbol itself. Handy.

I don’t know that I’ve ever had any confusion about how to use a semicolon in the main of a sentence. I use the to join to complete sentences when I feel they pair well. I’m not arguing my instincts accurately identify appropriate pairings; I’m just saying that’s my operating procedure. I’m certain I stumble in the esoteric uses involving lists following colons and dates and other stuff. I’ll pause to consult…

Looks like I can use the semicolon to replace regular conjunctions; however, for the fancier conjunctive phrases I use it and a comma.

It also appears to function like a supercomma when comma-filled independent clauses would be normally separated by a comma to avoid confusion. I can again use it as a supercomma when series may be required to use commas. Think dates and appositives.

I think I’m good here.

233 words on day 610

Were I to Have Curated

I curate. (simple present)
I am curating. (present continuous)
I curated. (simple past)
I was curating. (past continuous)
I have curated. (present perfect)
I have been curating. (present perfect continuous)
I had curated. (past continuous)
I had been curating. (past perfect continuous)
I will curate. (simple future)
I will be curating. (future continuous)
I will have curated. (future perfect)
I will have been curating. (future perfect continuous)

Curate! (imperative)
I may curate. (subjunctive)
If I curate, then I would have curated. (subjunctive)
I intend to curate. (infinitive)

This seemed like a perfectly meta way to let you know how tense I’ve been and what sort of mood that’s put me in.

Someday, I will need to know these things. Now I can say I once did. Let this now reside among the things I’ve forgotten.

144 words on day 559