Funny Spelling Mistakes
We’ve all seen them. Those funny typos, and sign mishaps which tickle us. There are websites devoted to them, and talk show hosts read them aloud. Spelling mistakes of this nature are hilarious for everyone except typists, publishers and sign painters.
Sign Painting Mistakes
By far the most common place to see spelling mistakes is on hand painted signs. How does this happen so often? Anyone who has ever painted a sign will tell you that sign painting involves a lot more than spelling. There is a lot of prep work to do before lettering. Most of the time the surface must be primed and the background color painted before lettering can be applied. Preparing and painting the sign usually involves strong paint fumes in an enclosed area.
Then the space on the sign is planned while under the influence of paint fumes and sleep deprivation. Sign painters are always sleep deprived, yet they must plan the space so that each letter has room to be placed. Then there are line weights and overall width of each letter to consider. Planning a sign requires math, and five minutes of math, especially after huffing paint tends to put sleep deprived sign painters into a dreamlike trance. When in this state of mind, sign painters tend to care deeply how the letters look, and not notice spelling at all.
Spacing is vitally important though. Once a therapist requested a sign, and trusted the sign painter. This is always a huge mistake. After a whole day of not seeing any patients he went out to find a sign stating, “The rapist is in.”
Another beautifully hand painted sign in front of a convenience store reads Child Beer Available Here. Again the lettering is perfect, but the message is a little messed up.
Picket signs are even worse, because suddenly non professionals are involved in the same activities as professional sign painters. Even without the indoor/outdoor paint fumes, they manage to mess things up very often. The next day it is hard to make a point when people keep laughing at their sign.
At a recent commemorative rally for Dr. Martin Luther King, Signs read “I have a Darem,” and “I have a Draem.”
At a protest of dropping school standards a few years back, a father’s sign demanded that children be taught “Reading, Writing, and Arithetic”
Another source of funny misspellings is foreign packaging. Sometimes ideas do not translate well, and what sounds great in one language just sounds silly or embarrassing in another. We all know the Chinese offer us “Diet Water”, with “lower fat,” (the secret is in the “artificial water flavoring,”) but now they also market “Sweat Refreshment Water.” If you don’t care for sweat water, they also sell deserts that “make happy on your table.”
Spelling mistakes happen all the time, whether because people don’t know the language, are naturally poor spellers, are excited about something else at the time, or are just too tired, or intoxicated to notice. One way to make sure of spelling is to type it on the computer first and use spellchecker. If the words are for a sign, go ahead and print them at the size needed, and trace. Make sure the letters are in the right order by typing a smaller version as well. Using a spellchecker brings typos and sign painting errors to a minimum. For best results do this before priming the board.
Internet spell check is very helpful in finding and correcting embarrassing errors on blogs, forums, and other websites. Nothing is more embarrassing than to forget or ignore spell check because one is so excited or passionate about a subject on a forum, or news site, only to be made fun of for poor spelling. Those ‘heat of the moment’ mistakes can be prevented with internet spell check.
Spell check is very important for writing articles, term papers, and material to be published. Be sure to use spell checker before turning in papers. A few minutes of using spell check can save a lot of embarrassment later.