Wednesday, July 20, 2016

Wednesday Wisdom - Spell-Check, Snark-Check



"Sometimes I spell a word so wrong that even auto-correct says, "Hey, man, sorry. I've got nothing for you."  


I have children who won county-wide spelling bees, but they didn't get that skill from me. I spell so badly I even developed a pet peeve about it, back in the days of paper dictionaries: how are you supposed to find the correct spelling of a word when the only way to find it in the dictionary is if you can spell it correctly? So spell-check is a great blessing to me. I automatically scan everything, especially emails. Nothing goes out without spell-check.

It's too bad there's not an app that checks for mean words or ugly tone. Call it "Snark-Check." Saying something perceived as cruel or sarcastic or snarky can create lots more trouble than sending out a misspelled word. After one too many of such incidents, I ran into these wise words from Calvin Coolidge: "I have never been hurt by what I have not said."

I took his wisdom to heart and developed a little rule for myself: Never Send Bad News in an Email or Text. If it might sound harsh or negative or mean-spirited, don't send it. If the answer is no, pick up the phone and call. You can soften things in a conversation that sound brittle when written down. You can take back something you've just said; it's much harder if it's in writing. This simple rule has spared me a heap of trouble. I just wish I had Snark-Check to warn me when I'm about to break it.

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