As many of you know I use the exclamation mark sparingly and even wrote an essay on the subject to encourage others to do the same, but I’ve made a discovery. I happened upon a list of punctuation marks in the dictionary and instead of ‘exclamation mark’ it had ‘exclamation point.’ Baffling, I know. A point is a dot, like a period, so an exclamation point would simply be ‘.’ and a rather poor excuse for an exclamation. Exclamation mark just sounds more exclamatory, spreading exclamation cheer to boys and girls everywhere. Besides, everyone agrees it’s a question mark, not a question point. The exclamation mark is simply a straight question mark. (As opposed to a gay one).
I turned to google as a voice of reason, but it had 94,000 results for ‘exclamation point’ and only 66,000 for ‘exclamation mark’. My dictionary doesn’t even list exclamation mark. The only mention is in the definition for exclamation point, where it states that it is “also exclamation mark.”
I know I’m going out on a limb here. People may not take kindly to such a reckless grammatical decision, but I’ve got to take a stand. I’m going to buck the trend. I’m fighting back against tradition. By golly, I’m going to stick with my 66,000 cohorts in crime and continue to use ‘exclamation mark’ because it makes sense. Anyone with me, arise and exclaim!
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