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Stupid Things My Spell Checker Knows

Stupid Things My Spell Checker Knows

Any literate person knows better than to rely on their Spell Checker in the first place.   Actually, any person who would CALL himself a literate wouldn't need a spell checker in the first place, since they make so few mistakes and since they always proofread, just in case.

But have you ever been astounded at the words your Spell Checker DOES know?  Have you ever had to look up a misspelled word, because you knew you mistyped it, and the spell checker is FINE with what's been inputted?

I left a letter out of “would” just now, while typing quickly, and couldn't figure out why my spell check was OK with “wold”.  Uh, what ?  So off to Dictionary.com I went....

Wold – noun
1 . an elevated tract of open country.
2 . Often, wolds. an open, hilly district, especially in England, as in Yorkshire or Lincolnshire.

Uh, Right !  SO glad my spell checker is equipped to handle this vital and much-used term.   Don't we all tend to write about elevated tracts of open country during the course of a business day ?

But if my spell checker is so all-fired smart, how come it can't handle my NAME ?

It already knows how to spell Agnes, Matilda, and Euripides.   But it freaks out when it sees me coming.

So I went back to Dictionary.com to see if they knew my name.  It was THERE !   Whoo hoo !!!!  (I meant the cheer, “Whoo hoo”, not that that was my name, silly.   My mother wasn't THAT crazy.  Or Chinese.)   And I just kept pressing that IPA button for the megaphone that actually makes the pronunciation come out audibly.  Over and over, press, press, press....
Glynis,  Glynis,  Glynis !

So nice to hear SOMEone pronounce it properly !!

So nice to know that SOMEone cares about me, sniff, sniff.   And here I was thinking it was only Hulu.com who cared.   They have that nicely worded popup that asks me, “Do you need a break ?  You have been watching more than three hours.”   How caring of them to think of me – and my bladder.   How diplomatic of them to not mention that I really should get my widening carcass off the couch and onto a jogging path.

By the way, it's “perfectly fine” for me to spend three whole minutes asking a website to pronounce my name over and over.   But for some of my other friends and readers (Susan, Sharon, for example) that would just be VAIN !!!  And actually, it didn't keep saying my name louder and louder as my typing font implied as a crescendo.   Well.... not until I played with the laptop speakers each time.   Now if I could just find an mp3 or link to a vast crowd applauding, and run the two at the same time....... (But no, I'm not vain.)

I'm sure I posted this somewhere earlier in this blog, but that penchant of mine for entitling entries something they are not really about sometimes annoys even me.  And so I can't find it.  Seems apropos to post it here.

Spell Checker Poem here: http://grammar.about.com/od/spelling/a/spellcheck.htm 

“The Spell-Checker Poem"
More than an exercise in homophonous humor, "Candidate for a Pullet Surprise" endures as a cautionary tale for all those who place too much trust in spell checkers.

Candidate for a Pullet Surprise, by Mark Eckman and Jerrold H. Zar
I have a spelling checker,
It came with my PC.
It plane lee marks four my revue
Miss steaks aye can knot sea.

Eye ran this poem threw it,
Your sure reel glad two no.
Its vary polished in it's weigh.
My checker tolled me sew.

Lastly, besides not relying on your spelling checker anymore, be sure to not use “apropos” inappropriately.  Nor to misspell it.  Don't MAKE me start another blog entry !


Glynis Jolly
Dec. 2nd, 2011 02:10 pm (UTC)
For some unknown reason, our name never quite makes is to the dictionary unless you physically go to the library and hunt down the right dictionary.

I think what bothers me the most is that I rather like my name despite the uncommon quality of it through the ages. Otherwise, I'd change it to something that is in every dictionary.


blue, Swan, water

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