More than one right way

May 7, 2012

in Be a grownup, Change

Direction signs © Blojfo | Dreamstime.com

A friend sent me a kind correction on how I used punctuation and quotation marks in a recent post. She knows I care about doing things right, and that I would not be offended – which I was not. However, while she was right, I was not wrong. I use logical quotation style, also called British style. In this style, punctuation is inside the quotation marks only if it is part of the quote. This makes more sense to me, which is why I do it. I suppose my doing this means those across the pond think me wise, while my countrymen think me odd.

My point here is there is often more than one right way to do something. Sometimes there are many right ways to do something. I know this is a difficult thing for those who are black and white people! The problem is when a black and white person thinks there is only one way to do anything, which makes all other ways wrong! This leads to friction, and can be especially problematic in marriage.

Another aspect of this is the “but my way is more efficient” or “my way makes more sense”. The British style quotation makes more sense to me, and since it’s what comes to me naturally, it’s easier for me. That does not mean it’s easier or more logical for everyone. Even if your way is faster for you, it may not be faster for your bride. Alternatively, maybe it would faster, but not as easy or obvious. Regardless, her way is not wrong just because it’s not how you would do it.

I’ve seen men who never cook insist their bride set up the kitchen in the way they think it should be. They “know what’s right”, and I think these guys honestly believe they are doing their wife a favour. The wife on the other hand does not feel blessed; she feels she is being treated like a child, or that her thoughts are being dismissed as irrelevant. It seems to me if he doesn’t cook he has no say unless it’s a valid health or safety issue.

How about you – are you doing this to your bride in any area? Can you back off and accept that her way is better for her? Both she and your marriage will benefit!

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5 comments
Bill
Bill

We do not like the Oxford comma.

Daniel
Daniel

Of course, everyone knows that the Oxford comma is the right way... *ducking as I head to the exit*

Bill
Bill

I didn't know there was a "British Style". I have always thought the American Style to be illogical so it turns out my protest style was actually British style. Thank you for that. My whole day will go better.

The Generous Husband
The Generous Husband

Daniel - That's how I learned it, and I still do it that way. Makes a difference is the list of words are not all single words.

The Generous Husband
The Generous Husband

Bill - Likewise, I did it that way before I learned that it was accepted by some as the best way.

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