A Letter

6 10 2009

Dear Apostrophe,

First of all, I just want you to know how much I appreciate you. You work so hard, giving us possession and shortening things . . . as far as punctuation goes, you’re indispensible.

You can be a little tricky, true. Until I learned your rules, you were quite mystifying. Now that I know the reasons behind you, though, I am in awe of your ability to clarify so many things.

I’m the first to admit I sometimes misuse you. The occasional ‘it’s’ slips in where ‘its’ was really the word I needed, and that ‘whose’ and ‘who’s’ can trip up even the most conscientious.

I get especially irritated on your behalf, though, when the error is on a store sign, where people have paid good cash-money to abuse you in large print. You would hope someone would think to proofread an object using considerable capital outlay.

When I passed a new sign last week, I wanted to weep.

Bad enough to misuse you on a sign, bad enough to leave your readers wondering what exactly the sign means, but pairing you with Z?

I shudder, and apologize most inadequately for the ignorance of humanity.

Please know there are some of us who still respect and love you.