18 Jan 2015: Things I Hate About the English Language #1

So what’s up with the sentence I see so often “I love you, too.” ???

What’s with the comma after too?  I did a little research and found several references that said there was no reason for that comma. So, like a good little girl, I let it drop.   And then I was watching something on TV that night with subtitles and there it was … he said “I love you, too” in the subtitles, comma and all.

So here what I hate about the English language, those hard and fast rules my English teachers were so insistent with seem to all be a lie!  This whole too thing with the comma only proves what I’ve suspected, that Mrs. Eminheizer (my old English teacher) just liked her red pen too much!

So as with all my books, when I get to the very end, I’m left with a few lingering questions about things like should I put in a comma or not when it comes to the too’s.

Here’s something I dug up that illustrates my point that there just don’t seem to be any hard and fast rules in the English language anymore:

From: http://www.quickanddirtytips.com/education/grammar/when-use-comma-too

The Difference a Comma Makes The word “too” is an adverb that indicates “also” or “in addition.” It most often shows up in the middle or at the end of a sentence. Most of the time you probably won’t use a comma with “too” because your sentences will be chugging along without needing a pause. So you could say, “I too like reading mysteries” or “I like reading mysteries too.” If, on the other hand, you want to emphasize an abrupt change of thought (1), you do use commas, which, among other things, are used to indicate pauses: “I, too, like reading mysteries” or “I like reading mysteries, too.” In these sentences, you are adding a pause to create emphasis. There is no right or wrong here. Comma or no comma after “too” is really up to you and the context of the paragraph where the “too” sentence is. If you want to emphasize your thought, you can add the comma to slow the sentence down. If no emphasis is necessary, then no comma is necessary.

I really just don’t get the whole add a comma for emphasis thing.  Aren’t commas supposed to tell the reader how to read something?  I’m not sure I understand them being for emphasis.  If I wanted to really emphasize a word in my novel, I’d bold it, put it in all cap letters or italicize it.   But a comma?

Maybe Mrs. Eminhiezer failed me miserably, but I just don’t get it and you won’t find a comma before too in any of my books.


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