MASON CITY | Mick Baker gets a kick out of seeing if visitors can spot a punctuation mistake on his Decker Meatpacking Company advertising clock.
The mistake appears in the tag line at the bottom of the clock which reads "Worlds Best Ham's and Bacon."
The Mason City man eagerly shared some of the clock's history on this National Punctuation Day.
Baker and his late wife, Sally, bought the clock at an antique store in Galena, Illinois, years ago.
"Many, many years ago my wife and I found this. Here it is," pointing at the clock in a wood case hanging in his kitchen area.
"I have a lot of fun with people. Some really think they know good grammar and punctuation and they say 'I can't see it.'"
He said they told the antique dealer they were from Mason City, Iowa, and the Decker family operated a packing plant there.
"Of course, they made the world's best hams and bacon and so forth. So we kept it for quite a few years. We had a home over on Parkridge Drive with a big mantle and we had it there.
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"Well then, we built this townhouse and we decided we didn't need it anymore. We sold it to some friends for the same thing we paid for it," Baker said.
"Then they moved from a house to a double-wide mobile home and they didn't need it anymore, so we bought it back for the same price. I'm so glad I have it," he said. "I'll donate it to something in Mason City when I am done with it."
Baker said growing up in LuVerne, his grandmother was a big influence.
"She was adamant about punctuation, spelling, prepositions dangling at the end of a sentence," he said.
"I give her a lot of credit for teaching me that — you know, the things we should have learned in school."
National Punctuation Day was founded in 2004 as "a celebration of the lowly comma, correctly used quotation marks, and other proper uses of periods, semicolons and the ever-mysterious ellipsis," according to the organization's web site.
Well, did you spot the mistake? Here goes. The line should read "World's Best Hams and Bacon." The apostrophe was in the wrong place. If you spotted the mistake give yourselves an A.