Mrs. Fields

Darn you, Mrs. Fields, for forcing me to look up the HTML code required for rendering quote marks accurately in order to complain about your humongous typo!

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mrsfields_em

What they have there is an opening single quote mark. WRONG, WRONG, WRONG! An apostrophe goes the other way:

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It's easy to remember the difference if you think of the apostrophe in the word don’t: See how it is shaped like the number 9 (in this font, at least). An opening single quote mark is shaped like the number 6.

Apostrophe = ’
Opening single quote mark = ‘
Closing single quote mark = ’

Aww, aren't they cute? I'm slightly more fond of the semi-colon, but that's another blog entry. (You can think of the apostrophe as a closing single quote mark if it helps, but . . . ew.)

Also, if you know that the delicate and staid apostrophe alerts us to the omission of letters, then no way would the other mark make any sense. One of the most common errors is with rock ’n’ roll. Because both the a and the d of and have been dropped, two apostrophes must go in, not a set of single quote marks, like rock ‘n’ roll. Leave it up to them to sneak in a 6 and 9.

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