Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Cursory Spell-Check verses the Real Thing.

In my recent Blog, “Spellinmg and Othe rMistakes”, I mentioned a recent spelling mistake in a previous Blog and thanked the person who corrected me and asked for future corrections when appropriate. Not quite anticipating the response I got.

Following is the comment I received from one of my American friends. He wrote: “Okay, I'm politely and courteously pointing out the following mistakes: “I” should be “it”, “reversed” should be “reversed”, “damming” should be “damning”, and “perpetrated” should probably be “perpetuated.”

Without carefully reading all that he wrote, I picked up on his ‘Spelling mistakes” and the following is my reply to him: “Hi: Thanks for your corrections, however they have actually raised another problem for me and for all non-American writers for that matter. And that is, the spelling mistakes that you pointed out are only spelling mistakes for Americans. For everyone else, they are in fact not only correct but also English, as it has always been written. I have been aware of this problem before, but as I am an Australian writing in Australia for mostly Australians, I have so far refused to use the American spell-check and thus stick to the Aussie spelling. So while I do thank you for pointing this out, for the moment at least I will be sticking to The Aussie way of spelling for now.”

Having said, that I now realise that he was in fact right about me spelling “reversed” wrong and also using “I” instead of “It”. Somehow they did slip through my Aussie Spell-Check, and now that I have checked it properly I appreciate his corrections even more. However at first I could not see past his “obvious” mistakes, to see my own. Does that ever happen to you too?

You are so busy seeing others mistakes that you can’t even see your own, even when, like in this case they have been carefully and politely pointed out to you? Perhaps like me, you were both busy and tired and only gave it a cursory glance and not the proper attention it truly deserved?

If so, that is my plea for today. Never ever, even in the simple things, just give them your cursory attention. Always, and even in the ‘”simple “ thing, give them your full undivided attention the first time and you won’t have to spend much more time later, fixing up your problems caused by too much hast at first. What say you?

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