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    My kids are awesome. We were discussing a television show, and I made this comment:

    "I would've just maced him by now."

    I was thinking, "pepper spray." My kids, however, were thinking, "Medieval weaponry."

    Death of the Hyphen

    I have noticed a trend in professionally-written language, and that is the omission of the hyphen. Laziness has caused most editors and editting software to just give up on it. Unfortunately, that causes some of us grammar nazis to have to read a sentence twice or more to fully gauge the sentence's true meaning. The only thing more irritating is the improper use of the apostrophe, but that's another rant.

    Back to my beloved and apparently deceased hyphen!

    Consider this little tidbit: New age tool.

    What does that mean? Is there some new weapon in the fight against aging? Actually, the answer is Deepak Chopra. Seriously. So, Deepak Chopra can help me look younger, longer? Sadly, no; however, you would not know that from the Fark headline I just read.

    The actual sentence: "Deepak Chopra: new age tool, or EPIC new age tool?"

    Including the hyphen that used to belong to "new-age" would have made this a good laugh, but alas--ear wax. The hyphen is now being left out of previously-hyphenated words at an alarming rate, causing responsible writers like me to actually struggle with reading. Well, not so much reading per se as not bashing our e-readers against our skulls in frustration.

    I think it's pretty dreadful that some people are concerned that immigrants are not learning our language when there are so many shameful examples of born-and-bred citizens who don't even grasp the basic grammatical principles of their own language.