Monday, September 14, 2009


I've had a problem recently with typographical errors. I've often been guilty of using "its" when I should have used "it's", typing "teh" instead of "the" or making other errors that are spelled wrong or are grammatically incorrect. But with word processing software being what it is these days, I usually am made aware of the error and can fix it before I send an email out and get totally embarrassed.

However, it is not always the case that the spelling or grammar checker catches my mistakes. Here are two recent whoppers that have served to make me a bit more conscientious.

Email 1

Ric: Do you know of any docs that talk to the use of Regular expressions in Oracle SQL other than the docs?

Me: Jonathan Gennick wrote a small O'Reilly book on Regular Expressions. I hate it and it does a good job.

...Click Send and then look at what I just typed and realize "Oops!"...

Me (again about 2 seconds later): That last response should have read "I haVe it and it does a good job", not "I haTe it". :)

Ric: Well that made me laugh this morning!! LOL!!

OK...that wasn't too bad, but still! What if I hadn't caught that and had sent it out to a large distribution?!?!? Yeesh...

Email 2

I had written a fairly lengthy response to explain something to a group of folks that had attended a meeting with me. After several paragraphs of explanation, I ended the email as follows:

I hope this helps clear things up. Let me know if you need any further information.


A few minutes later I received this response:

Your detailed explanation was very helpful. However, I'd suggest you remember that the letters T and G are very close to each other on a keyboard.

It seriously took me a minute to get what he meant. But when I noticed the error, I was horrified! How embarrassing! I've now added an auto-signature option and will never end an email using the phrase "Regards" again. :)


Unknown said...

Oh and I recently heard story on NPR that talked about a movement that would (petition to FTC) to ban "r" word along with other 13 already banned words.

Oh the pain caused by a misplaced single character.


Brian Tkatch said...


Goog exampels, thanx Karin

Peter Lyons-Lewis said...

Sometimes I manage to sign-off emails as "Perte"... not that I am particularly.



Joel Garry said...

Good thing it didn't substitute some PC term.

Crafty Retards


word: womie

Cheryl said...

Everything about that story made me smile. I've spent a lot of time in my life proofreading papers, professional documents, etc. Most of the mistakes really are appalling. Thanks for giving me one to just laugh at!