The covers snug around my face, I started one last conversation with my husband before sleep.
B: Today in a planning meeting, we talked about subordinating and coordinating conjunctions.
T: I don't remember what those are.
B: Well, a subordinating conjunction introduces a dependent clause, like 'When I get my hair done, I will have no grey hair.'
T: Oh, right. OK.
B: And a coordinating conjunction connects words, phrases, and clauses, like 'I want ice cream and french fries for dinner.' Think FANBOYS: for, and, nor, but, or, yet, so.
T: Got it.
B: Then we started talking about the Oxford comma.
T: Are you kidding me?
B: Of course not. Oxford commas are important. I mean, you've seen that poster that says, 'Let's eat Grandma' and 'Let's eat, Grandma.'
T: Yes. But it's bigger than that. I once had a whole undergrad class session devoted to its use. Not everyone agrees that that last comma is as important as you think it is.
B: Really? Why? If you don't include the last comma, you end up putting two things together that may not necessarily go. Like not everything goes together like peanut butter and jelly, right? If you put two items together without the comma, the list makes no sense.
T: Yes. But sometimes the comma takes up space. Word economy is critical to writers. So is space economy.
B: I still think the Oxford comma makes the most sense and I will still keep using it.