Friday, July 31, 2009

To correct or not to correct...

About 10 years ago when I was a temp working at an assignment, one of my supervisors sent out an email that went to everyone on the floor (about 45 people). As soon as I read the email and saw all the grammatical errors, I immediately cringed and shook my head. I thought to myself, has she always written this bad? has anyone ever pulled her aside? And since I worked under her, I wondered if I should even say anything or just hope someone else saw it. I agonized about this for about a good hour or so, and then finally I printed out the email and went over to her office.

I started off with a futile disclaimer about how I wasn't trying to make her feel bad or be a smartass, but being an English Education major, I'm always in teaching mode. I arrogantly told her that I could proofread her emails if she wanted, and if she didn't want me to do that, she should recruit someone to do the job. My point was, when mass emails are being sent out, its important that the message doesn't get lost in translation. From that moment, until 10 minutes later when I walked out of her office, it was hell.

She yelled and cursed at me, she told me that proofreading was not my job, and given that I was a temp, I needed to focus on becoming permanent, not trying to correct her. She also told me that no one had complained about what she wrote, so it must not have been that bad (all lies). From that day, until about a year later when I eventually left that company, she sent out a slew of emails full of subject/verb agreement problems, misspelled and omitted words, and new words that had yet to be invented. I never said a word after that.

So this morning, when one of my co-workers forwarded me an email that had "basis" where the word "bases" should have been, I hesitated to say anything to her. No one likes to be corrected, and given that this woman was already heated about another issue not related to me, I didn't want to get on her bad side. But I'm stubborn, so I went ahead and told her about the correction...and she appreciated my honesty and said thank you. Crisis averted.

Watch out world, I'm correcting EVERYONE now...and I'm sure my main man Ryan will find at least two errors in this entry and correct me. It all balances out.

I'm feeling a little racy today..

N.E.R.D - Lapdance - Music Video


GemEnigma said...

I found two errors. But "whose" counting? :-P

Amadou said...

Rashad, "your" right. It's tough to "no" when it's appropriate to correct people (particularly writing). Unless the errors are contained within marketing material to be seen by clients/prospects or superiors at work, I've learned to let them go. No reason to "loose" sleep over stuff like that, man.

Ryan said...

Grammatical errors in your writing? Never!