For not being a high-tech person, I’ve adapted pretty well and learned to use a smart TV, a smart phone, even a smart watch that offers to call 911 when it thinks I’ve taken a tumble.
The most trouble I’ve had is with texting abbreviations, and I’ve learned to my chagrin that LOL doesn’t mean lots of love.
I’ll even admit to misspelling words in a text. Besides being a bad speller, I find those letters are small, my fingers clumsy, and I don’t stop to proofread before I touch send, or sometimes I accidently touch send when I haven’t completed my thought.
What has bewildered me lately is negative texting interpretation. I read an article in a writers’ newsletter where a mother texted her high school-aged son a message about when he was coming home from school. When the teen arrived home, he wanted to know what she meant by her text.
“I meant what it says—see you later.”
“But you ended with a period!” He thought she was angry with him because she had used a period to end the sentence. He wondered what he’d done wrong.
How did using proper punctuation in a text mean the sender was angry with the receiver?
In that article, psychology professor Celia Klin says a period can set a tone. She even ran a study of undergrads with the word Yup without a period and Yup. with the period. Turns out the majority of surveyed students thought the Yup. with the period was more negative, less sincere.
These are responses to the writer of that piece about using a period in texts:
- “I actually really don’t like getting text messages that end in periods because it always feels so hard and passive-aggressive. Like, are you mad? What’s going on? Like, did I do something wrong?”
- “If it’s like ‘OK.’, that’s like, I don’t want to talk to you anymore.”
- “If we’re just talking about, like, our favorite movie or something, and someone uses a period at the end of a sentence, I’m not gonna take it, like, aggressively.”
My first grade teacher is turning over in her grave, and I’m tired of all the perceived slights. How can some people think the simple innocent period is aimed at their self-esteem? Why look for ways to take offense?
The period controversy reminds me of the two wolves legend, attributed to various Native American tribes and told as a story of a grandpa talking to his grandson.
“Inside you, inside me, inside all of us, two wolves are fighting,” the grandpa says.
“One is evil – he is anger, envy, sorrow, regret, greed, arrogance, self-pity, guilt, resentment, inferiority, lies, false pride, superiority, and ego.”
“And the other one?” the boy asks.
“The other is good – he is joy, peace, love, hope, serenity, humility, kindness, benevolence, empathy, generosity, truth, compassion, and faith.”
“Which wolf will win the fight?” the boy asks.
“The one you feed,” the grandpa says.
It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas. My 2020 e-novella, On One Condition, is available on Amazon. Reviews appreciated.
On One Condition is now available.
When his office staff ding-dongs him about replacing their aging artificial tree with a real one, former Marine Russell Rhoades reluctantly agrees. At the Christmas tree farm, he meets widow Molly Turner, who is helping at her dad’s seasonal business. Russell is smitten by the tall vivacious woman, but is she still in mourning? He returns day after day to the farm. But how many trees does a guy need?
Download your copy today!
- November: Period.
- October: On One Condition
- September: Capturing Sunshine
- August: Baseball’s Return
- July: They Bug Me
- June: Coincidence or Mysterious Connection?
- May: Spontaneity
- April: The Paints on the Wall
- March: The Signature Sandwich
- February: The Dream Catcher
- January: A Random Act of Kindness
- December: Raking the Leaves
- November: Reflections in the Mirror
- October: Pioneer Woman
- September: Rewinding
- August: The Last One
- July: Nice People
- June: Jeopardy
- May: Playing
- April: Seeing the World
- March: The Signature
- February: So I Went
- January: NOW do it
- December: Eureka!
- November: Morning Ritual
- October: The Hard Part
- September: Walking in the Dark
- August: Old is New Again
- July: Change Orders
- June: Country Songs
- May: Scars
- April: This Old Place
- March: Wearing a Robe
- February: A New Adventure
- January: Another Year
- December: Beginning a Hiatus
- November: A Name
- October: Of Course, I’ll Use the Grand Canyon or How I Spent My Summer Vacation
- September: I Packed Courage, Too
- August: Nothing Dangles From My Rearview Mirror
- July: Grandma Brown’s Desk
- June: Old Paint
- May: Dandelion Yellow
- April: Cleaning Out Our Past
- March: The Flames of Cheer
- February: The Color of Oklahoma
- January: Former Cars
- December: The Stocking Conundrum
- November: Comfort from a Cup of Tea
- October: A Friendly Wave
- September: Why Are First Memories Bad Ones?
- August: How to Treat a New Widow
- July: My Outrage or A Warning to Women
- June: Rock Collections
- May: May Baskets
- April: Screen Doors
- March: Hiraeth
- February: My New Key
- January: My Book Clubs
- December: The Real Santa
- November: Mrs. Coker’s Lamp
- October: Life’s A Holiday
- September: School Reunions, a.k.a. Looking Forward to the Past
- August: Risk
- July: Old Shoes
- June: The Ant Invasion
- May: Goodbye to the Sailboat
- April: A Rant
- March: Sharing Joy,
- February: On Reading Aloud
- January: The Lesson of Chicken Pot Pie
- December: The Scent of Christmas
- November: Life Markers
- October: Forgiving Myself
- September: I Won’t Change It
- August: Back in Time and Looking Forward
- July: Changes
- June: The Napkin Controversy
- May: On Being Overwhelmed
- April: A Time for Everything
- March: Washing the Car
- February: Drowning
- January: Who Will Live in My House?
- December: The Recipe on the Refrigerator
- November: The Lean
October: Washing Windows
September: Memories of Music
August: Leap Before You Look
May: The Hidden Garden
April: The Day Before April
March: My Favorite
February: The Safety Net
January: The Friendship House
- December: Do I Have a Small Mind?
- November: The Wonders Around Us
- October: Gaining Knowledge
- September: Respecting Others’ Beliefs