Love is in the Em

Hi, my name is Rino and I’m somewhat of a punctuation nerd. There’s one character I’m really mad for — the one character that floats my grammatic boat — and that’s the em dash. It’s the punctuation mark par excellence. Better than the colon or parentheses. Typographically elegant; functionally useful; and interpolative in the best prosaic sense. Used to mark an amplifying or explanatory element, or an interruption. Also for rhetorical pause: Darth Vader's line "I sense something, a presence I have not felt since—" And, to indicate a change of speaker in French novels and Joyce.

As wide as the letter m — and sometimes even wider depending on typeface. There’s also a 2-em rule if you really want to break in and score the text with a big, mean line.

I get a bit huffy when I see the lame use of double-dashes on a web page -- so ugly and scattered, like morse code in the middle of a sentence. Ummm, well, I don’t know how to make the proper em dash character, so I just ummm use the dash key. Just get into the html and paste: — and presto, you’re sorted. Get it right, mmmkay?

But this is preamble — what I wanted to say is that I did a count and Song Logic has a shining total of 470 em dashes. Of which I am very proud.

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