Oh, Dear Reader. What has become of us?*
. . .
Let me just start by saying that I’m not perfect. Not even close.
I leave clothes in the dryer, sometimes for days on end.
I obsessively worry the TV is too loud, and ask my husband ad nauseum to turn it down.
I barely cook; I struggle to follow Star Wars plot lines; I’m not sure how I passed any math class, ever.
I could go on.
But one thing I do do right?
I fucking proofread.
. . .
Now, I know we live in The Digital Age.
And, I like it. It comes in handy, pretty much every hour on the hour, when I can whip out my handheld dictionary-encyclopedia-history book-newspaper-iPhone.
It’s friggin’ convenient.
Yet this convenience comes at a cost, friends.
And I’m not even talking about the media literacy dilemma, and the glut of “news” available. What is real, and what is fabrication?
I’m also not addressing the threat of tweenagers having video cameras at their disposal, to post god-knows-what on the internet for the entire world to permanently view.
(Christ. I’m a parent now. This thought gives me serious heart palpitations.)
These are very real concerns, no doubt.
But I’m talking about something even more basic here: I’m talking about excellence.
. . .
It must be because we can simply post, edit, and post again that so many of us lack any concern for proper mechanics.
Or maybe it’s because we’re all *so busy * that we can’t take the time to reflect on the work we’ve created. We use terms like synergy and data-driven and congratulate ourselves for putting our pronouns at the bottoms of our emails.
But our work? Actual progress? The finished products we’re putting into society?
They have suffered greatly.
Auto “correct” makes incorrect suggestions, repeatedly.
Case in point: Chances are, you really don’t need that apostrophe in Wednesdays. Yet, you do need one in Papa John’s.
Go ahead. Take 30 seconds to actually think about it.
I blame corporations like Shutterfly, for printing address labels that say The Smith’s.
Nope. That’s not right. Please! Stop normalizing it!
And I’ll admit: it’s not the end of the world to see these errors. We have bigger fish to fry, for sure.
But it’s like society has given this collective shrug that says, “Ehh, it’s okay. We know what you meant.”
But do we? Would we hang a billboard that said 2+2=5?
Or rather, would we hang it for the right price, and even feel shame for knowing it was wrong?
I think the honest truth is that we’re in too much of a goddamn hurry to care.
. . .
I could obviously go on, but if you’re still reading at this point I’ll spare you the entire grammar lesson.
Because the point I’m trying to make is that nobody seems to care anymore.
In fact, those who should care—our writers and makers and leaders—are setting a shitty example when it comes to excellence.
It’s more like negligence.
I know I’m just one simple SnapDragon in this world of air-brushed everything. I have crows feet and chipped toenail polish and cat-claw holes in most of my wardrobe. But for fuck’s sake, I proofread. I know I’ll still make mistakes–we all do–but I sincerely hope they are far and few between.
I still take pride in the written word.
So let us push ourselves in this life, Dear Reader.
Be on time.
Return your shopping cart to the cart corral.
Rethink that apostrophe.
Because sometimes those little things make a big-ass difference.
. . .
SnapDragon is a mom who frequently makes dino sounds.
Follow Snippets of SnapDragon for her two-bit opinions on damn near everything.
*This post was inspired after seeing a third typo on a major news website.
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