SATIRE — It was a sad day for the punctuation community when one of its pillars, the Oxford comma, was found murdered in his home on April 1. He was 118 years old and is survived by his wife, the apostrophe, and their many children.
His murder came as a shock to everyone that knew him. His closest friends describe him as someone who was always there to lend a helping hand and had a passion for list-making. The main suspect in his death is the “Associated Press Stylebook,” the only known enemy of the Oxford comma.
The apostrophe spoke about her husband at his funeral.
“It just broke my husband’s heart when those horrible people at the AP decided to fire him. He gave his all to them and they just threw him out with the trash. He did nothing to them,” the apostrophe said while crying uncontrollably.
This writer did ask the Associated Press for a comment on Oxford’s death and was carrier pigeoned (I thought they were all extinct) this statement. I had to type it quickly before it exploded.
“Our lawyers have advised us that carrier pigeon was the best way to send this message. We at the Associated Press had nothing to do with the untimely death of the Oxford comma. We at AP respected him and send thoughts and prayers to his family. To show that we had absolutely nothing to do with his death, we have decided to set up a college fund for all of his children. This message will self-destruct in 10 seconds. 10, 9, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2, 1…KABOOM!”
The Oxford comma was well known around the world for his punctuation abilities. He was a fan favorite among users of the “MLA Style Manual,” “Strunk and White’s The Element of Style,” “The Chicago Manual of Style,” “APA Style” and the “U.S. Government Printing Office Style Manual.”
The Oxford comma was a well-educated man getting his nickname at, you guessed it, Oxford University. Before Oxford, he was just known as the serial comma. According to the people who knew him best Oxford was a humble punctuation mark, but took great pride in his nickname.
Humble is a great way to describe all aspects of his life. According to an anonymous source who was close to him says that Oxford truly had a rags-to-riches story. The anonymous source states, “Oxford was like Jay Gatsby but without the bootlegging or the weird obsession with Daisy Buchanan.”
Oxford grew up in the middle of nowhere and won a scholarship to Oxford University at an unspecified age. He dazzled faculty and students alike with his intelligence and way with words. The university is also where Oxford met his future wife.
Dr. SmartyPants, one of Oxford’s classmates, said he was always jealous of how well-liked his late classmate was by everybody.
“It is such a terrible tragedy what happened to him. I remember how much of a teacher’s pet he was always answering the questions right. It’s hard to believe that Oxford would even have any enemies let alone any who would actually kill him. But the world works in mysterious ways. He had the best grammar skills out of everyone in our class. His skills were unmatched and he got acclaim for it.”
This writer agrees that the world works in mysterious ways and is sorry to interject, but was also a fan of the Oxford comma grammar abilities. English majors and grammar enthusiasts seemed to have been most affected by his death. They came out in droves to his funeral. Holding signs that said “Long live the Oxford comma” and “You made grammar fun to learn.”
We may never know who killed the Oxford comma and why they did it. Maybe the killer is reading this, or maybe the killer is the one writing this article.