Dawn Reader

Dawn Reader
from Open Door Coffee Co.; Hudson, OH; Oct. 26, 2016

Friday, June 3, 2016

Too Be or Naught Two Bee ...

Yesterday, I posted the second half of a description of a summer evening in 1966 when I spent my last night in our family home--in a house almost entirely empty (my family had moved). I did not notice when I wrote it--did not notice, in fact, until a couple of hours later--that I'd made an egregious spelling error in the title. By this time, I'd already posted it on Facebook ...

I'd written to instead of too, a distinction I've known since early elementary school--and probably before: My mother was an English teacher, a fastidious one. (At 96 she still does not hesitate to remind me of some nicety I have failed to observe in my speech.)


Joyce had not noticed it, either. I always show her things I've posted on my blog; she will read them aloud for me, and she invariably finds typos (and sometimes worse), which I hastily correct in my blog.

But this is the first, I think, in a title.

Now, I have more than 800 FB friends, the vast majority of whom I never hear from, of course (I don't really understand the FB algorithms), and not one of them let me know about it.

I'll speculate upon some reasons:

  • No one looks at my posts.
  • No one who did look noticed.
  • People assumed I knew what I was doing (!).
  • People were embarrassed ("Dyer's losing it!").
  • People were shocked ("And Dyer calls himself an English teacher!?!!")
  • People wanted to embarrass me and/or gain some revenge ("I remember when Dyer did X to me in class; now it's his turn!")
  • People figured it was just a typo.
  • People didn't care.
We all make silly errors, of course. We write; we proofread (if our typo is a real word, spell-checker, of course, is useless); we post.  But these brainless brains of ours expect to see what we think we have written (not what we did write), and so errors sometimes slip by--as this one did. As others have. And will. (As Edna St. Vincent Millay wrote about something totally different, "So it has been, and so it will be, for so it has been, time out of mind.") Most of the time the mistakes we make are not because we don't know the rule but because, well, we're flawed. Mistakes are us--or, rather, we, which sounds awful. (Toys "R" Us has ruined us!)

Which is why I've not corrected the Facebook link (it is correct on Blogspot, however!). A little humility is good for all of us. The evidence of our fallibility is everywhere. No point in trying to hide it, Too dew sew wood bee two vane.

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