August 18, 2009
Man takes on street sign punctuation
A British man has drawn both praise and criticism from neighbors for painting apostrophes on street signs he claims are grammatically incorrect.
Stefan Gatward, 62, of Tunbridge Wells, England, said he changed signs on his street, St. Johns Close, to read
St. John's Close because of the importance of proper punctuation, The Times of London Online reported Tuesday.
I think one should stand up for things and language is worth standing up for. The trouble is that everything is dumbed down now, he said.
I've lived on St. John's Close for 14 months and have had to look at those signs every day. I decided enough was enough.
Gatward said he received compliments from one neighbor while he was painting the apostrophes but another neighbor, a fellow former soldier, called him a vandal.
He asked me what I was doing and told me I was wrong. He called me a vandal and a graffiti artist, Gatward said.
He tried to tell me that the Post Office would not deliver to the street if you put an apostrophe on the address.
I've been to three universities. I don't know it all but I still know a lot more than a mere corporal, he said.