How Moving to England Cured My ‘American Verbal Inferiority Complex’

The Beauty of Rule-Based American English Is That It's More Democratic Than the Brits' Version

I had lived in England for three years when Eats, Shoots and Leaves struck in 2003. English writer Lynne Truss’ “zero tolerance approach to pronunciation” became a British publishing phenomenon—helped along by its fun title and its naming and shaming of proofreading sins. By that time, I’d begun learning the many ways in which U.K. punctuation norms differ from my native American, and I was working to become a punctuation “bilingual” so that I could more appropriately correct the work of my British students.

So I was bemused when the …