Sunday, August 23, 2015

Many Mouths, Many Feet


Is there a correlation between age and errors? 

You might jump the gun, stand on your chair and shout "yes!" but some of the greatest minds of the world did their greatest work on the flipside of the half-century mark (I'd also know you are under thirty by your willingness to stand on the chair and shout...but that's another post). 

What do great senior minds know that I don't know? With all the mileage on my beloved carcass, a certain amount of experience must surely equate skill, yet I'm as inept as I ever was. 

What does one do when they age beyond proficiency? Must I hire secretaries or move to a blogger's long term care facility (or lang tome care facely, as I will probably write one day)?

I cannot proof myself. There; I said it.

It's so frustrating, even when it's harmless: I'll write "there" instead of "their." I swear by Thor's hammer, I know the correct usage. In fact, I know it at least as well as I know the difference between the possessive "its" and "it's" (for "it is" or "it has"). Notice I explained it, just to prove I am not a complete zero. 

If you're in the same boat as moi, we are not alone. Perhaps you would enjoy one of my favorite "oops" sites: the 52 Worst Photoshop Mistakes in Magazines. There's comfort in seeing professional graphic artists forget things like, oh, the number of hands a person might have...or the pesky habit of humans to have two legs, God willing.

Hubzam, on the other hand, can find a faux pas in a split second. Though I usually load post to go live at midnight, I know that twelve hours later is lunchtime for my guy. He reads posts daily and always finds something amiss. Random strangers are not nearly so supportive...trust me on this one. Basically, the post lunch post is always better after I fix what he found and it's comforting to have someone who actually likes you to tell you your flubs in a kind way. 

Let me rephrase that: the afternoon-after-lunch post is more grammatically correct. Aside from the grammar, it's the same ole' shtick. Once it's out there...well...what can I say?


Now, where's that publish button...

Happy Monday, peeps.

41 comments:

  1. Maybe some of the best minds did their best work after 50--but we never see how much time they spent correcting the errors they made while doing that work!!! Actually, I'm 45...and with things like writing, you definitely get better with experience. I think it's that way with most pursuits. As long as your mind is sharp, the sky's the limit!

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    1. The kids I work with all have the idea that writing comes out perfect -- or it's totally wrong! There's no "in-between" in their minds...which can be so discouraging. Fortunately, I make enough mistakes to pad anyone's ego.

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  2. That's what I like about google chrome. It has a built in spelling and grammar checker and it just caught me spelling grammar wrong.

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    1. Spellchecker is the BOMB, but autocorrect is my nemesis. My phone puts the word "thou" instead of "you" all the time. It makes me feel like Moses.

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  3. I spend so long writing most of my posts that I just can't be bothered proof-reading them afterwards. On the rare occasion that I'll get someone to proof-read it for me, they'll inevitably pick something up.

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    1. We may be cut from the same cloth, buddy, but there is an element of "I can't see my own mistakes" in my approach.

      Another factor for me is that I spend time doing a graphic or cartoon most days...and I do it at the end of the day...my brain is not at its best, ha ha. That's the only time I have, though!

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  4. Writing grammar is hard enough, but proofing is on a whole different level. But thank goodness for built in grammar checkers on blogging platforms, but then they are useless for correcting the right usage of words.

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    1. My problems run the gamut, Blogoratti. If one checker covers it, I'll figure out some way to mess it up. :-)

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  5. A wise man once said, "When in doubt, ask Janie Junebug (if you can find her)."

    Good morning, dear Cherdo!
    (I used spell-checker, but it insisted the word I wanted was Cheddar. :)

    I am proud to have inspired today's post with yesterday's senior moment (a moment that will shirley last well into the future).

    I'm a lot like your hubzam (except that I wear dresses). I tend to be a good proofreader. When I read other people's material I spot the errors. However, when I compose messages of my own, it usually takes two or three passes and even uttering each word aloud before I clear up all the mistakes. Sometimes even that doesn't work, especially when I have distracting internal dialogue going on.

    I think it all boils down to the famous quote by Pee-wee Herman, "Those who mind don't matter, and those who matter don't mind... and I'm trying to use the phone!"

    Happy Monday, dear friend Cherdo! This is Monday, right? Just checking.

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    1. Janie is the Queen of Grammar. My husband tells me I'm the Queen of America but it hasn't helped me, so far.

      Yes, dear Shady, your very minor omission had a hand in this post, but only because it reinforced the fact that everyone makes boo-boos big and small. I tend to go "stupid" on my mistakes or "oh-my-gosh-how-did-you-miss-that-one?" I kid you not: I've actually seen mistakes at the moment I hit publish that were all but invisible till that micro-second.

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    2. Just to prove my point, I didn't mean to publish that just yet...good grief.

      Cheddar may be a reasonable alternative name for a cheesy friend. :-)

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    3. I don't want to be pushy, but I'm willing to proofread blog posts.

      Love,
      The Queen of Grammar

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  6. It is easier to spot others' errors in writing or typing than your own. Sometimes waiting a while before proofreading helps. But I've committed some howlers!

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    1. Amen, sistah! I can scan someone else's essay it a flash.

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  7. I find it easier to spot others too, as I can screw up even if I know the difference at my zoo.

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    1. Add to that - the need to rhyme!
      Reallly, Pat, you don't have the time.

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  8. Well, I struggled with grammar in my teens and twenties and now in my fifties and (in less time than I want to admit) hope to be struggling with it in my sixties.

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  9. Hey, if you want to feel better, go to a very popular site that publishes blog posts by lots of very useful, intelligent and (sometimes) important people. In the time that I have read and profited immensely from this fabulous blog, I have encountered perhaps three posts (they are all guest posts) that do not have something laughably wrong.

    No, I am not going to name names. Just start looking around. You will realize that you are not alone...

    (How's that string of notes go? DEE dee deedee, DEE dee deedee...)

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    1. Aw, Diana...you need to use my email, ha ha. Nice in public, detailed in email. Yep, that's the ticket, bwahahahahahahaha.

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  10. I recently wrote a post that included, "You must know that ..." only I spelled it "no," even though I know the difference. I also get sloppy with its/it's.

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    1. Hey, it can't be worse than the whole texting mess, ha ha.

      When my son first added texting (back when you had to choose that add-on), my rule was you had to use complete sentences and grammar. U no what I mean?

      When I see an adult text "U R scheduled 4 a ...", my impression of them makes a downward turn.

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  11. If I make a mistake, trust me, one of my readers finds it.

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    1. Amen...this has inspired tomorrow's post...my stint at church as the bulletin composer.

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  12. I am a good speller. I used to compete in Spelling Bee's ( yes that's how it was spelled) as a kid. My problem is that I blog quite a bit from my phone and I make more mistakes that way with the keyboard. Not to mention all the crazy auto corrects it does and if I don't proof read, it can be a whole different word. I notice the errors when I read other blogs but they don't bother me and I don't like to point out the obvious. No way would I call someone out when I can end p with errors myself the same day.

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    1. That's sort of how I feel about calling out things...I don't want to throw the first stone, lest a landslide of stone fall on my head. The exception: if it's a good friend and we can laugh about it together.

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  13. Cherdo, I really do try to watch what I post and publish, but I sometimes see things that make no sense later. My daughter has just finished reading through my next book with her comments....I can't even get started on it, as I know it means a lot of editing. Ugh.

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    1. That's the best kind of daughter to have, I think! I need to talk to Juggernaut, Magoo and Gonzo...they may have editing potential.

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  14. I make those kinds of goofs all the time. And more! Sometimes it's shocking that it happened and embarrassing, especially if a beta reader notices it before I do. It's any easy slip of the fingers to write "there" instead of "their." Even if we know the difference and are good with grammar, it still can happen.

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    1. I'm pretty much an expert at goofs at this point, Chrys!

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  15. Mostly, I find if I stare too long at something, I overlook obvious stuff. It's frustrating!

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    1. Me, too, Madilyn! And most of the time, these short posts aren't really something I plan very far in advance.

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  16. Oh I hear you big time. Grammar is never my long suit. I had a teacher in my office this morning and she told me that the curriculum for schools do not have spelling and grammar checks any longer. She has had student who had no clue how to spell anything or what is correct grammatically. The students will argue that their essay is ok if written the way they text. I think we are better off than many younger ones

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    1. Some of the technology that is supposed to help us, doesn't really.

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  17. God, there's my normal blogging experience in a nutshell. Typing a word three different ways and getting red squiggles till you shout, "ALRIGHT, damnit, how DO you spell it?" Check. There and their, no and know, etc, check. Reversing letters, check. (Especially fond of "knida" for "kinda"). Sentences that half make the screen, half stay in my head until after publishing, check. And of course, leaving one parenthesis (ese?) off, check. And let's not go to hitting "i"s and "u"s or "w"s and "e"s together.

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    1. Oh, I love to hit two letters at once! It's my favorite.

      Somehow, this comforts me...ha ha ha.

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  18. I know first hand what you are talking about. Even during revisions I'm embarrassed to say I sometimes do not catch the simple errors like Their, There, And as CWMarting wrote sometimes I have no idea what the red squiggles are telling me!! But I do love it when they are wrong, it makes me feel superior!

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    1. I make up so many words that the squiggles get ignored (Cherdo...Hubzam...peepazoids...).

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    1. I read this one out loud to Hubzam and we cackled!

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  20. Much is made of people who did their best work at an advanced age. Perhaps that occurs because everything they've learned allows them to reach the pinnacle of their profession. They can also afford assistance, whether it is someone who conducts research or edits or re-writes. Laura Ingalls Wilder is often mentioned because she didn't write the Little House books until she was more than sixty years old. However, Wilder was already a writer. She wrote for magazines and had a regular column about farm women. She tried to write the story of her life in "Pioneer Girl." It was rejected for publication. I have a copy of it. It's interesting, but not well written. It was only when Laura and Almanzo's daughter--Rose Wilder Lane, a successful writer whose work has been eclipsed by that of her mother--took her mother's stories in hand and helped her shape them into books that they became a success. Lane also edited her mother's writing quite heavily. At one point, Laura told Rose to write something herself because if Laura wrote it Rose would only change it anyway. As Your Queen of Grammar, I am the product of many years of education, practice, and prodding by my children.

    Love,
    Janie

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Thanks for your personal yada, yada, yada,
Love, Cherdo