Months ago, a curious stranger who stumbled upon my Twitter profile asked: what the heck do I mean when I write “nestled within a comma’s curve” as my whereabouts in this corner of the universe?
I began using the phrase around three years ago when I felt uncomfortable sharing my exact location on my social media profiles. Although there’s no doubt that Zuck and his minions can easily figure out my exact location through their sneaky algorithms or some ancient alchemy, it was at least comforting to think that I’m not giving my coordinates that easy. In hindsight, it gave me a false sense of privacy.
Privacy stuff aside, what am I hinting at when I say “nestled within a comma’s curve”?
1. Let’s start with the most obvious.
A comma is a punctuation mark that you’ll end up wrangling with when you’re writing — from print ads to thousand-word essays to lengthy novels that you can’t seem to finish reading.
Whenever someone reads “nestled within a comma’s curve” and takes a pause for a second to think about what it means, my writerly heart jumps with glee! All the more when they’ll associate the phrase with writing, words, or any form of wizardry that involves putting letters together to tell a story. After all, it’s what I do for a living.
2. As for the not-so-obvious meaning, what comes to mind when you read the words nestled and curve?
Can you envision someone who’s sitting comfortably in one of those cozy lounge chairs?
If you can, hats off to you because it’s exactly one of the images that I want you to think about when I wrote that phrase!
As someone who scores high on the introversion scale, I’m perfectly okay with the idea of lounging cozily in a chair with a good book or listening patiently to a friend who’s sitting across me.
3. Finally, let’s take a look at its metaphorical meaning by considering one of the comma’s major roles in writing: to join two or more independent sentences.
With that said, I have this slight obsession with unifying contradictory opinions, ideas, or thoughts.
The idea of finding that one main thought or commonality that unites two or more opposing ideas sends me into a frenzied state of aha moments.
My reasons (particularly the last one) may sound too far-off to you, but there’s a certain sense of allure and artisty when making up new metaphors or symbolisms in language.
Do you feel the same way?