Writing Pet Peeves #8: Commas

Oh man.

Have you ever, seen sentences, written like this?

No? Lucky you. I have. And each time I just want to grab the person doing the writing and shake them until they never want to put a comma in another sentence again. I understand that a lot of people hate writing. I definitely understand that many are just plain bad writers, but sentences like these are unacceptable.

In what world does that sentence look correct to any individual? And in what world do these people seem to think they were taught this by an educated professional? Heck, a mediocre high school student could teach better than this. I have no idea what goes into writing sentences with commas all over the place, but my guess is that sometimes someone comes up with a sentence and thinks there should be some kind of punctuation. So what do they do? They throw in a few commas to make the sentence more complete.

Or maybe there’s a little alien just on the inside of their heads and he’s trying to communicate a secret message to his motherland that we humans are not supposed to understand? No clue. Just stop with all the commas everywhere. Please.

Writing Pet Peeves #4: A/An

Okay. I have no idea how long ago I was taught when to use “A” versus when to use “An” but it was very early on in my school years. Unfortunately, I’m not going to go into a mini lesson about the two because every person who reaches my blog is well beyond the age at which one should know how to use them. I mean, if you read a sentence out loud that uses one of these words incorrectly it just doesn’t sound right. Let’s try.

“A eagle flew high above the park.”

That sounds wrong. So saying that they both sound correct isn’t even close to being a legitimate excuse. Let’s try one more.

“An girl walked along the busy street.”

Oh my goodness. No. This is ridiculous. I bet some of you are thinking that these two examples are so obvious, but no. Every time one of these two words is used incorrectly the error is so obvious that you just want to kick someone in the shin. Or is that just me?