Will PAC-Man Gobble Up The King’s English?

On the one-year anniversary of the Punctuation And Capitalization Tax, commonly called the PAC, reviews have been mixed as to its impact on America.

Gwen Prosody, a retired English professor, has been an outspoken critic of the PAC tax.   Ms. Prosody said, “This is a regressive tax, like those on tobacco, alcohol and lottery tickets.  It penalizes the poorest in our country. Do we want to be a country where only the wealthy can afford proper English?”

The Professor continued:  “The effect is seen most startlingly with the young.  Notoriously cash-strapped teens have embraced the change.   An examination of their texting habits shows they have all but abandoned punctuation and capital letters, formerly essential elements of writing.  They have, in effect, created a sub-language they call PAC-Man.”

“Once a vital means of communication, language has become yet another barrier separating the young from the old; the rich from the poor.”

When asked for her reaction to the decision of the University of California, Berkeley to add PAC-Man to their core English curriculum, Professor Prosody responded with a sound best described as a snort.

Congressman Ed Snollygoster, author of the PAC tax legislation, defended his signature project.  “When this investment in our future was passed into law, doomsayers predicted it would mark the end of civilization as we know it.  After one year we see that the PAC’s effects have been overwhelmingly positive.  I don’t count the actions of a fringe group of youngsters, who are always looking for ways to tweak the establishment’s nose.” the congressman added with a laugh.

Snollygoster continued: “While budget estimates may have been a bit optimistic, the PAC has still brought much needed revenue into the nation’s coffers.  After all, if we want America to continue to lead the world with such endeavors as the National Cowboy Poetry Gathering, the money must come from somewhere.” 

Media mogul Rupert Murdoch today issued the following press release:

“News Corporation publications will adopt the PAC-Man styling for all of our written media, effective immediately this includes online content newspapers and magazines is this an attempt to avoid paying taxes definitely murdoch said not we look upon this as an opportunity to enhance the English language confusion should be short-lived as we adapt to the new style we hope young adults will assist their elders death and taxes are not the only certainties in life he continued so is change

in a related announcement congressman snollygoster today proposed an amendment to the tax code which would add a tax on spaces tothepactheamendedtaxwouldbecalledthespac

About pegoleg

R-A-M-B-L-I-N-G-S, Ram...Blin!
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35 Responses to Will PAC-Man Gobble Up The King’s English?

  1. Jackie says:

    Today I learned the word ‘Snollygoster’ and I shall forever be grateful to you for it. What a fantastic word.


  2. Neeks says:

    funny that is not only the way my teenage daughter writes and texts but its how she talks too onesentencebecomesoneverylongword


  3. Will the segment of the population striving to punctuate and capitalize correctly be receiving a portion of this tax revenue?


    • pegoleg says:

      Of course! Indirectly. Through the vast benefits to society of subsidizing life for those who abandoned high school English in favor of sleeping in, having/siring babies and not working.

      (I was over commenting on your word-themed blog post while you were here commenting on mine. In November, a young blogger’s fancy turns to thoughts of English.)


  4. Spectra says:

    ifor one will nottry to beat this newspace tax outright, butwill sneakily buryit in wellplaced writeoffs whichmy accountant willproperlyhide in thisyears return. Inthisway I am surenot to drawany attention tomy self ormy bogusreturn.


  5. Tori Nelson says:

    Crap. I just now figured out what LOL and OMG mean. I’m more sure today than I have ever been, silence might be the best policy!


  6. bigsheepcommunications says:



  7. u got 2b kdng me. i cn’t stand NEthing thats not AP stile. (I really had to think about that to type it. I’m going to be that old lady who’s telling total strangers to speak proper English in public places and local retail establishments.)


  8. winsomebella says:

    : – D


  9. Charleen says:

    No joke: I just read Cowboy Poetry contest winning poetry. I found it so odd to read that right after I stepped out of the Cowboy Hall of Fame.


  10. Perfect timing — I wish all November ballot issues were presented like this! 🙂 Your post calls to mind another neat trick our brains can do. Apparently, all we need in order to read a word properly, is to see are the first and last letters of the word in the correct order, and then all the letters in the middle can be all mixed up, and we can still read a sentence just fine (allowing for normal spaces, of course). Check it out:

    Here’s an example I found on the internet. It’s amazing!

    “Aoccdrnig to rscheearch at Cmabrigde Uinervtisy, it deosn’t mttaer in waht oredr the ltteers in a wrod are, the olny iprmoetnt tihng is taht the frist and lsat ltteer be at the rghit pclae. The rset can be a toatl mses and you can sitll raed it wouthit a porbelm. Tihs is bcuseae the huamn mnid deos not raed ervey lteter by istlef, but the wrod as a wlohe.”


  11. As always, your wit and humor are priceless. I’m older but not rich and I understand what you;re getting at here. Do you think it will be lost on young, poor readers. Oh, silly me, they’re too busy texting and Tweeting to read this lengthy post! 😉


    • pegoleg says:

      I don’t have any young and poor readers. I only appeal to the older, wealthy reader on purpose. Soon I’ll start marketing mink coats and time-shares to my readers.


  12. Brilliant. Texting is the root of all evil (in my eyes anyway). Maybe it’s because my thumbs just don’t work as well as an 18 year old’s? You know, I try to punctuate properly, I really do. It’s hard, but I press on and still make mistakes. But it’s the effort that counts, right?


    • pegoleg says:

      I’m with you. I may never get the proper use of semi-colons to stick in my brain, but I’ll keep on trying. And texting – can’t do it without intense effort. I’d rather pick up the phone and call.


  13. Big Al says:

    I believe it was one of the greatest English speakers of all time, Winston Churchill, who said of texting: “Never in the history of mankind have so many, said so much, so incorrectly, so often.”


  14. Amy says:

    Professor Prosody = Clever!!
    Personally, I don’t think you should be able to break the rules until you learn them first. If you chose to type lazy on your own time, that’s one thing, but if you are writing for the masses, then a little care should be taken.


  15. Barb says:

    Commas…they save lives….

    Let’s eat Grandpa
    Let’s eat, Grandpa

    Now, Excuse me while I go look up psrody.


  16. pattisj says:

    Snollygoster, did I vote for him? My writing group leader makes me write properly. Guess I’ll be paying those taxes.


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