From ‘beast chiropractors’ to ‘inhuman resources’ and signing off a business letter with ‘kind retards’ we all have our moment of glory when it comes to the type of typos that spell check doesn’t pick up. We’re in good company too. Although Stephen Hawking doesn’t (yet) write for us, he obviously got quite excited about the Large Hadron or “Large Hardon” Collider, and that’s just how it ended up appearing in his book.
We check our work very carefully, and 99% of the time, we pick up those howlers before submitting our work or hitting ‘send’, but the occasional rouge is bound to escape from time to time.
Fortunately, none of us has gone to the lengths of the writer who insisted that every detail of his book should be absolutely perfect, only to find that a typo on the book cover ruined his efforts. He committed suicide. We’re still very much alive, with only a little bruising to our egos to show for our ‘oops’ moments.
There are no red spell-check alerts if you say that the congregation was ‘sinning with the choir’. Nothing stops you from wearing your ‘weeding dress’ on your special day, and politics in a democracy is bound to involve the occasional ‘erection’.
We find ourselves asking if these wonders of typography are really Freudian slips. Perhaps Andrea (that’s me) has had bad experiences with human resource departments, maybe Bridget secretly believes that chiropractors are inherently evil, and Patrick may have had a somewhat unfavorable opinion of the person he was addressing in his business letter. Then again, maybe not.
We draw a veil over these deeper considerations and simply note that the keyboard is mightier than the sword in many ways. It’s all too easy to slay one’s own reputation or that of a client who misses the slip and publishes our work as is. That’s why we double and triple check everything we write. Better safe than sorry!