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Bad metaphor, punctuation, time for a change? - The Phantom Librarian
Spewing out too many words since November 2003
Bad metaphor, punctuation, time for a change?
Promise, not a political post in general, but I was reading my morning conservasites, and someone commented about a liberal blogger that after the election, "Like Scarlet O'Hara, he's retiring to the fainting sofa."

Forget the book... dude, did you even catch the movie? Scarlet? Fainting sofa? You have her confused with Aunt Pittypat. I'm not even a GWTW junkie, and I know that much. (Also that my grandmother once watched the movie with with her kids, noticed some of the props in Frank Kennedy's store, and excitedly said to my then-a-child mother, "Look... that man has my jugs!")

Argh. Just changed some apostrophes in the quote above. Am I the only person who just loathes so-called "smart-quotes"? I think they look bad, and I did all my internetting in Lynx for two years, which refused to read them and made it hard to spot things like dialogue. I turn them off in Word's autoreplace when I remember, but if I copy-paste something, I go through it and change them all, but I always seem to miss one or two. They look fine in some fonts--particularly Times New Roman--at least on paper, but that's not the most common internet font, and they just look doofy in most sans-serif fonts.

I'm getting bored with my leaves and green stuff. Shall I go for something more autumnal around here?
7 comments or Leave a comment
cheshyre From: cheshyre Date: November 5th, 2004 07:08 am (UTC) (Link)
I agree with you about smart-quotes.
In Win XP, I've found that Ctrl+" (meaning Ctrl+Shift+') is an OS-wide toggle (affecting my browser and text editor), though individual applications like MS Word might have their own separate settings.
furiosity From: furiosity Date: November 5th, 2004 07:12 am (UTC) (Link)
*raises hand*
I hate the "smart quotes" also. Yuck yuck yuck. I don't use any software that automagically conjures them, but copy-pasting them is a pain.

Thank Reorx for Ctrl-r. I'm pretty sure Word allows it too, but I haven't used it in years... try hitting Ctrl-r, fill in the appropriate boxes, and then select Replace All - that should take care of 'em.

And I think the leaves are lovely.
melyanna From: melyanna Date: November 5th, 2004 07:41 am (UTC) (Link)
That's still not as bad as the Laurence Olivier adaptation of Pride and Prejudice which featured lamps that might well have been used in GWTW. Historical accuracy, meet faithfulness to the novel.

The curly quotes don't bother me — I suppose it's because they're actually more correct than the ' and ". Those are for feet and inches, I think. But the sans serif version of quotation marks is also incorrect, as the angled ones are technically minutes and seconds.
rabidsamfan From: rabidsamfan Date: November 5th, 2004 09:10 am (UTC) (Link)
Well, if you're typing html code and putting it into an LJ entry, the "smart quotes" give you a bad tag so I just went and reset Word on my PC. Thanks for reminding me to do it!

(And I wonder how many people know the difference between feet/inches and minutes/seconds?)
melyanna From: melyanna Date: November 5th, 2004 09:16 am (UTC) (Link)
I'll confess, I only know the difference between feet/inches and minutes/seconds because I had a teacher in high school who was quite adamant about using the correct version. It was actually in the syllabus for his class — I think he even gave a list of fonts which had the curly quotes available. And he always explained why the other two were wrong.
mamadeb From: mamadeb Date: November 5th, 2004 08:59 am (UTC) (Link)
First thing I do when I start using a new copy of Word is to turn off "smartquotes". If I cut and paste a story, I do a global search and replace to replace the curlies with the straights if I have to.

Given that you don't write them differently whether they mean inches or quotes or seconds, I don't see why they need to be different when you type them.
lannamichaels From: lannamichaels Date: November 5th, 2004 11:44 am (UTC) (Link)
I despise smart quotes. Every time I have to reinstall Windows (which happens much more often than you'd think), I have to go into Word and manually get rid of all the autocomplete entries for contractions, since those have smart quotes and I never notice them until I'm done.

I hate smart quotes so much that I won't even read fics that have them. They bother me.
7 comments or Leave a comment