Hunt-and-Peck Typing: Bane of the Inept
personal anecdote is humorous only because I caught my typo before it
was too late to correct it. Whenever an advertiser makes a payment,
I always try to remember to send a thank-you note to let him or her
know that payment has been received. The standard e-mail Subject line
I use is something like, "RF Cafe: Payment Received - Thanks!" Hunt-and-peckers
like me (yeah, intentional self-deprecation) bear the burden of having
to look at the computer keyboard most of the time whilst typing. Somehow,
even with decades of sitting in front of a computer for hours on most
days, the neurons never quite fully connected between my fingers and
the word processing region of my brain.
Last week I was typing
the Subject line for one of the aforementioned e-mail genres while a
Windows system file update was occurring in the background. Maybe it
doesn't happen on Macs, but on PCs when a process is running that consumes
a lot of clock cycles the task you are performing in the foreground
is intermittently interrupted - sometimes for many seconds. If you happen
to be typing at the time, often some of the letters you press don't
register even though some buffering action by the keyboard records the
keystrokes for transmission once the usurping process relents. Here
is where not being a touch typist nearly got me in trouble.
typing my intended message I looked up in the Subject line and saw,
"RF Cafe: Peeved - thanks!"
The computer managed to skip just
the right (or wrong) letters to produce the unintended salutation.
"RF Cafe: Payment
That was a close call. Even a spell checker wouldn't catch such a goof.
Fortunately, the lady who would have been treated to my unfortunate
insult would have forgiven the mistake once explained. I even apprised
her of the scenario that almost happened and she got a good laugh out
of it. The Brits are famous for their wry, witty humor so if the error
was going to be manifested anywhere, better it be in 'Jolly Old England.'