Periods and Spaces

When I first started typing some English teacher beat into me the practice of putting two spaces after each period. I've done it so long that it is a habit sort of a grammatical seatbelt. But think about the waste associated with those simple spaces. What if we just used one? Would our quality of life be diminished? Would everyone stop being able to read what we write? I suspect that the impact would be meaningless in our lives but would mean so much to the trees that very act saved. I don't know the numbers but say we save one tree in a thousand by going to one space--that would really be a lot of trees.

So why is this guy writing about spaces after periods? The answer to that is that the "extra" space after the period is a metaphor for what the Center for a New American Dream is trying to remove from all of our lives: things that are wasteful yet meaningless, but someone has told you that they are important. Did you miss the space I did not use in this piece? Bingo.

Tags: Periods, Spaces, Trees, Waste

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