This so aptly illustrates how the devil is in the details.
Susan says: “I just love this! So many problems in one small sign. You can see the effort that went into making this sign. A big clean font was chosen to make it easy to read at a distance. It was carefully enclosed in plastic to keep it dry and it was stapled securely to a post beside the sidewalk. And yet! And yet! Do we understand the writer’s intention? Of course. Is it a grammatical mess? Oh yes! How many errors can you find? Does it make you less likely to clean up after your dog’s thanks? Maybe. At least it will make you smile.
Proof reading isn’t fun and it isn’t easy. It’s time consuming and tedious. And it’s not always the little errors that we miss. Sometimes the error is so big and so obvious, we just don’t see it no matter how many times we look. Missing words. Misspelled words. Typos. I’ve made mistakes. We all have. The problem is, someone in your audience will see it if you don’t. The result is a small chink in your credibility and reputation as an expert. Why be vulnerable to attack or criticism? Take just one more look at your presentation before you declare you are finished.”
Lucia says: “I have been walking by this sign several times a week for months and I still react to it every time. Sometimes I feel amused, other times I feel miffed, but I always notice it and wonder what they were thinking. I agree with Susan, that the devil is in the details and we should make sure our work is proofread. But I wonder if intentional mistakes have their place. Maybe the people who posted this sign made mistakes on purpose. Maybe they wanted us to notice and keep noticing so we wouldn’t leave little doggie presents on their grass.”
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