And it turned out to be critically important. Because it is. So there, haters.
A Maine court ruling in a case about overtime pay and dairy delivery didn’t come down to trucks, milk, or money. Instead, it hinged on one missing comma.
Delivery drivers for local milk and cream company Oakhurst Dairy have been tussling with their employers over whether they qualify for overtime. On March 13, a US court of appeals determined that certain clauses of Maine’s overtime laws are grammatically ambiguous. Because of that lack of clarity, the five drivers have won their lawsuit against Oakhurst, and are eligible for unpaid overtime.
The profoundly nerdy ruling is also a win for anyone who dogmatically defends the serial comma.
The serial comma, also known as the Oxford comma for its endorsement by the Oxford University Press style rulebook, is a comma used just before the coordinating conjunction (“and,” or “or,” for example) when three or more terms are listed. You’ll see it in the first sentence of this story—it’s the comma after “milk”—but you won’t find it in the Maine overtime rule at issue in the Oakhurst Dairy case. According to state law, the following types of activities are among those that don’t qualify for overtime pay:
The canning, processing, preserving,
freezing, drying, marketing, storing,
packing for shipment or distribution of:
(1) Agricultural produce;
(2) Meat and fish products; and
(3) Perishable foods.
There, in the comma-less space between the words “shipment” and “or,” the fate of Kevin O’Connor v. Oakhurst Dairy was argued. Is packing (for shipment or distribution) a single activity that is exempt from overtime pay? Or are packing and distributing two different activities, and both exempt?
From a twitter friend- this genius bit-
“The punishments of hell differ in degree, according to the quality and measure of sins.” — Hollazius
Hendrickson have published the brilliant Biblia Germanica, Luther’s 1545 edition of the German Bible.
No other German book has exercised for centuries such a profound effect on the German language as the German Bible of Martin Luther. Over time other German translations appeared, and in the present we see an almost bewildering abundance of new translations, but the Luther Bible launched the progression of the German language. In addition, the Luther text set binding standards for dealing with the biblical word. The output is one column set, with the exception of the Psalter and the Proverbs of Solomon, which are in two columns. This print is a replica of the 1545 Luther Bible, of which only two originals are left. This replica maintains the numerous wood cuts, headings, and explanatory notes of Luther.
They’ve sent along, with excessive kindness, a review copy. More anon- and here it is in its box and shrink wrap:
Would be for Christianity to be outlawed. Then the Church would be de-wormed and only actual Christians would participate in the life of the Church. Cultural Christians would fade out of the picture and the Church could return to its calling freed from its bondage to the whims and whimperings of the marginally committed complainers and half hearted pseudo-disciples.
Dear Tom, just so you know, it’s not ‘Revelations’… It’s Revelation. Apparently NT Wright isn’t sure of the title of the book. In this video, at 4:23, he calls the Book of Revelation the “Book of Revelations”. How sad. F-
His 2005 returns, reported by MSNBC, showed a loss of over 100 million dollars. What kind of good business person loses so much money that his tax returns reflect 100 million in write offs?
It’s easy to understand why he wants these things kept secret. He doesn’t want you to know how pathetic and sad he is. Loser.
America elected an incompetent businessman to be its incompetent President. Good job, America. Good job.