Editorial Fantasy #1 – Attack with a Sharpie

July 22, 2010

A couple of weeks ago I was at the YMCA waiting for my son’s swimming lesson to end. To pass the time, I started reading the notes on the bulletin board and on the wall. One of the items was a detailed list of instructions for treating the water with chemicals to keep the bacteria levels down. Apparently it is necessary to use a “vile” to measure the chemicals. The word “vile” was used repeatedly, making it clear that the writer had no idea that the actual name for a test tube or beaker is spelled V-I-A-L. Vial. Yes, vial. NOT VILE! Errgggh. I would love to sneak into the YMCA after hours with my black Sharpie and cross out the offending word every time it appears, replacing it with the correct spelling.

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One Response to “Editorial Fantasy #1 – Attack with a Sharpie”

  1. Claris Says:

    But chemicals ARE vile! 😉

    One error I see incessantly in Sweden is the “genitive s” – or shall I say “genital s”: it’s as common as venereal disease.

    In Swedish, when you link two adjective together, you often put a genitive s between between them and the noun they describe such as “maple walnut’s ice cream.” The problem is when this is translated into English by an unskilled translator the flavor becomes “maple walnuts” on the packaging. (Using English in product names is a marketing trend.) It’s not the walnuts that are maple, it’s the ice cream!

    The other night my husband and I were watching the movie “Fargo,” which has a lot of tongue-in-cheek Scandinavian jokes in it. At one point, a character talks about the “pancake’s house,” which drives his partner in crime crazy! I understand!!!


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