Friday, August 13, 2010


So I was writing something today and I wanted to emphasize a number. Normally when I want to emphasize something I just CAPITALIZE it. Because in typing etiquette, capitalizing something is the equivalent of shouting it.

Which it is why it is so uncomfortable to read stuff where the author has written in all caps. Because your brain is reading it as if the person were shouting, "COME . . . TO . . . MY . . . GARAGE . . . SALE . . . WE . . . HAVE . . . A . . . BOOKSHELF" with a bullhorn pressed to your ear. Why do they not understand this? Seriously. Why are their still people out there who don't get that this is an inappropriate and ineffective communication style?

I mean, I get why this happened 15 or 20 years ago, way back when it was still popular to write by hand-carving letters out on the page. When the internet was still somewhat new, we hadn't yet figured out how to converse in emoticons and fonts. In fact, there wasn't ANY SUCH THING as emoticons. I'm not kidding, whippersnappers. In the past, we did not use a semicolon followed by a close parentheses to indicate saucy tomfoolery. We just, you know, drew an UPRIGHT smiley face or something.

So I understand that there was a time when the need to communicate through the keyboard was all new and unregulated. Back then, it was actually pretty common to receive an email written in all caps, as if the sender was a little unsure about this new technology and thought perhaps shouting might help amplify her message. But this is not new anymore, people. Why, it's like some people are coming to the internet, but they don't know or understand the language and they just expect us to interact with them anyway. And I for one say, if you are not going to learn the language of the internet, then GET OFF. Or I would if I were a republican.

Anyhow, that's not actually my point today.

My point is that it is difficult to emphasize numbers in type.

Which made me think of this one time - I must have been eight or nine - lying on the bottom bunk at bedtime, talking to my sister in the top bunk.

"How do you write an uppercase 2?" I asked.

"You DON'T," Kim replied.

"No, but HOW?"

"You really just don't."

"But you know how you write and some letters are capital and some are not?"


"So how do you do that to a number?"


Although I'm just now realizing, that shows what she knows. Because I just wrote it.


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