I'm Rae and I'm a 22-year-old Texan. I like really old books, some poetry, sharing my rapid cycling bipolary feelings with the interweb, adorable animals, and also cold rooms and warm blankets. This blog is mine, so it will have whatever I think belongs here. I'm opinionated, but I encourage open discussion anytime.Message me anytime. There is a reason I follow you guys after all and it is NOT so that we can ignore each other.
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I just realized I might not be an actual Supernatural fan by Tumblr standards. I’ve never looked at a still shot from an episode and written a novel about nostril flares, shoulders, eye crinkles, man tears, and bro love to share with all of the internet. And I don’t intend to (she said with an inner IDGAF shrug).

Reblogged from masterprofessor  31 notes
so I have a question that's sorta completely unrelated to you or your blog. English was the third language that I learnt and I've gotten pretty good at it but I just have the hardest time with using semi-colons. since you're a professor and all I figured you might have some trick/way of checking to make sure you're using one correctly or like if you could just properly explain them, that'd be great.. sorry if the randomness of my question annoys you but thank you in advance :)
Anonymous

masterprofessor:

You’re amazing for having English as a third language. It’s a brutal language to learn from the outside. Hell, it’s a brutal language to learn from the inside! So don’t feel bad if you’re having trouble with your semi-colon. (Seems like I could make a half-ass joke there, but I’m not sure who would get it.)

Honestly, I bet 75% of the native English speakers entering my university don’t consistently use the semi-colon correctly.

::takes a moment to reflect on the shitty American education system::

Okay. There are two basic uses of the semi-colon. Let’s check them out via some Grammar Porn.

1. Semi-colons in complex lists

Use a semi-colon to separate items in a complex list. Normally we separate things in a list with commas. Take these three items:

- the mouth
- the cunt
- the ass

Put them in a sentence and it’s simple enough:

"Francine takes it in the mouth, the cunt, and the ass."

Clear. Basic. No worries. But things get goofy if the items in the list are more complicated, like these:

- the mouth, the hole that’s used most
- the cunt, the hole that drips
- the hole that is tightest, the ass

Now our sentence would read:

"Francine takes it in the mouth, the hole that’s used most, the cunt, the hole that drips, and the hole that is tightest, the ass."

See how confusing that is? We no longer know which description goes with which of Francine’s happy holes. What a pain in the ass.

In such a sticky situation we can replace the commas in this complicated list with semi-colons, like so:

"Francine takes it in the mouth, the hole that’s used most; the cunt, the hole that drips; and the hole that is tightest, the ass."

Boom! All clear now! Hooray for semi-colons!

2. Semi-colons in complex sentences

The other use of the semi-colon is to take two independent thoughts and to tie them together more closely than a period would.

Here are two sentences:

- She met me.
- She is ruined for other men.

We could set those two sentences beside each other in a paragraph, like so:

"Francine offered herself to me, and I eventually agreed to meet. She met me. She is ruined for other men."

There’s nothing wrong with this paragraph, but perhaps we want to make more clear the connection between meeting me and being ruined for other men. To do so, we can use a semi-colon to take those two independent thoughts and bring them together:

"Francine offered herself to me, and I eventually agreed to meet. She met me; she is ruined for other men."

See what happened there? See how nifty that is? See how it comes together?

Fair enough, you might say, but how do I know if I’ve used the semi-colon correctly in a given instance?

Elementary! Just replace the semi-colon with a period and see if everything checks out. The semi-colon connects two independent thoughts, after all. In grammar terms, we would say that it connects two independent clauses, which are essentially groups of words that can stand on their own as a complete sentence. So just check to see whether, by replacing the semi-colon with a period, you have two complete sentences. Observe how I’ve slightly altered our paragraph now:

"Francine offered herself to me, and I eventually agreed to meet. She met me; ruined for other men."

Is the semi-colon used correctly this time? Switch it out for a period and see:

"Francine offered herself to me, and I eventually agreed to meet. She met me. Ruined for other men."

Poetic? Maybe. Correct? Fuck no. “Ruined for other men” is not a sentence. It is not an independent thought. It’s incomplete. It’s a fragment.

It may also be a state of being, but that still doesn’t constitute a complete sentence in grammatical terms.

And that’s it. Pretty simple, right?

So…that’s one way too learn it :)

I lol’d. Then saved it because the grammar lesson is kinda fantastic.

Does anyone else always feel the need to apologize for drunk conversations even if the content was entirely normal?