The Washington Post is encouraging people to drop the period. You know, that one at the end of sentences, like this one.↙
This is probably going to make me sound like an old person yelling at clouds, but I can't get behind this one. My daughter* got annoyed with me for using periods in a message to one of her coaches. She said I sounded angry. Because I used a period? Really?
What is a period? It's a punctuation mark that let's the reader know you have ended a sentence. That is all. Let's not assign a lot of emotional baggage to a tiny dot, ok? Everyday we communicate through text messages, and we (possibly women more than men?) do a lot of self-policing. Do I put a happy face at the end of this message so this person knows I'm friendly? Maybe I should throw in a few exclamation points so everyone knows I'm excited about this. Why not add a few unicorns too?
I always use periods in texts to my contemporaries. We understand a period is just a period. I do find myself leaving out periods in texts to younger people since my child pointed it out. Am I afraid of looking old? Am I part of the problem? Do we really need to add to our list of social anxieties like this?!!
I think I'm afraid of living in a Henry James long run-on sentence nightmare, where I search line after line hunting for the period just to put the sentence out of its misery. Paragraphs should not be one long sentence. I refuse to read anymore James. I cannot live in a world full of Henry James impersonators.
Anyway if I send you a message and end it with a period, I'm not mad at you. Really.
*I accidentally put a ! instead of a ? in a text and the same teenaged child wrote back: "Why are you yelling at me?"