Ex­claims and ben­e­fits of so­cial me­dia speak

Harefield Gazette - - OPINION - Bm@il Ev­ery week BAR­BARA FISHER looks at is­sues that af­fect us all – the is­sues that get you talk­ing. You can join in by email­ing bmail­bar­bara@gmail.com

IAM writ­ing this on our wed­ding an­niver­sary – March 8 – which also hap­pens to be In­ter­na­tional Women’s Day (IWD). This may seem a lit­tle un­fair to Mr F, but when we got mar­ried many years ago, the IWD was but a mere glint in a fem­i­nist’s eye.

We had a won­der­ful day in my home town – Birm­ing­ham – which cul­mi­nated in ev­ery­one see­ing us off at the sta­tion, bound for our Dorset hon­ey­moon.

Ho­tels were just get­ting the idea of en suites, and we were de­lighted, but slightly hys­ter­i­cal, to see we had our very own toi­let. They hadn’t quite got it right though.

Plonked in the middle of the room in a small cup­board, it looked like a shabby ver­sion of a space rocket pre­par­ing for take-off.

There are great ad­van­tages in get­ting mar­ried young, as we were help­less with laugh­ter ev­ery time one of us used the Tardis. Now we would prob­a­bly be grumpy and want to change rooms… or get a quickie di­vorce.

Mr F’s Lon­don rel­a­tives – for yes he is from the Deep South – bravely trav­elled to strange and un­known ter­ri­tory for the wed­ding, al­beit to the Mid­lands, and Bri­tain’s se­cond city, not Outer Mon­go­lia.

One aunt, though, de­clined, say­ing it was too far and ap­par­ently ask­ing any­one who would lis­ten why Mike (Mr F’s maiden name) could not have found some­one closer to home to marry!

Which brings me to ex­cla­ma­tion marks. They do have their uses – and if I had omit­ted one at the end of the last para­graph, my faintly amus­ing anec­dote might have read as a whingey moan. On the other hand, it could come over as slightly manic, rather than sub­tly hu­mor­ous. Where do you stand?

The Govern­ment has in­cluded ex­cla­ma­tion marks in its cut-backs (sorry, sav­ings), and has de­creed that school pupils must ra­tion th­ese handy punc­tu­a­tion tools and only use them when it is gram­mat­i­cally nec­es­sary.

So­cial me­dia and tex­ting, it seems, have led to us all shout­ing (!) ev­ery­thing from the rooftops.

OK, I agree. We may have been over­do­ing it, but I can’t com­ply with­out a fi­nal fling!!!!!!

I’VE just read my worst night­mare. A woman in China died in a lift af­ter be­ing trapped for 30 days. Af­ter writ­ing this col­umn I will prob­a­bly now have ter­ri­ble dreams about be­ing stuck in a toi­let Tardis in the middle of Bournemouth. No ex­cla­ma­tion marks needed…

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