Time to chill out a bit

As most people know, I am a bit fanatical about things like spelling. In fact, Wenchy once observed that I wanted to rip someone limb from limb just for spelling an innocuous word incorrectly. I think it was “exquisitely” or something. I don’t know. Anyway, I recently found this: (skim read it for best results)

I cdnuolt blveiee taht I cluod aulaclty uesdnatnrd waht I was rdgnieg. The phaonmneal pweor of the hmuan mnid! Aoccdrnig to a rscheearch at Cmabrigde Uinervtisy, it deosn’t mttaer inwaht oredr the ltteers in a wrod are, the olny iprmoatnt tihng is taht the frist and lsat ltteer be in the rghit pclae. The rset can be a taotl mses and you can sitll raed it wouthit a porbelm. Tihs is bcuseae the huamn mnid deos not raed ervey lteter by istlef, but the wrod as a wlohe.

Hmmm; so I have decided to be a bit more relaxed about the whole thing! It is definately not as important as I thought!

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9 thoughts on “Time to chill out a bit

  1. The one that really gets to me these days is people spelling a word that means laughable as “rediculous”. That one really irks me and I’m sure it came from the Yanks. I mean, it’s formed from “ridicule”! There is no such thing as “dicule”, which by addition of “re” we can assume you have done twice! MORONS!

    Oh, and John Prescott’s sat in a cafe, when a waitress comes up and asks him what he’d like to order.

    “Ooh, I wouldn’t mind a quickie, love!” says he. Shocked, she slaps him in the face. His aide turns to him and mutters “Mr Prescott. It’s pronounced ‘quiche'”…

    Thanks, I’m here all evening! 😀

  2. Very good, Walesy. Yes, I have heard that one a few times…

    Do you remember when Peter Mandelson went into a fish and chip shop in Hartlepool to show how down to earth he was and asked for guacamole?

    A shameful day for Labour!

  3. Walesy, I blame the yanks for everything. After living here for 8 years now I can tell you they say and do pretty stupid things. Like “could you speak English please I can’t understand you?” and “what language do you talk over there in England?”. Okay! Also I have had, “are you from Australia?” and when I said “no actually, I’m from England” the response was “oh well it’s all the same thing isn’t it?”. Um, no not really thicko!

  4. Ah, fun topic…

    My sister was in the States for a year teaching. I went over to visit. This visit included a trip to the school, where I was part of an assembly, telling the kids all about Scottish culture.

    Anyway, when talking to one of the kids later in the day, he asked me why it was I “spoke much better English than (my) sister”! Naturally, Claire was terribly offended. Later in the week, she said she’d mentioned this to one of her colleagues, who responded “yeah, I was going to ask you about that”!
    Huzzah!

    The truth is, in the south of America at least, they speak more slowly than they do over here (and the Scots speak more quickly than the English as well). So, they find it hard to understand us. Doesn’t help that they’re hard of thinking, though.

    As for the actual topic at hand, my father and grandfather once had the most explosive argument over that very article – Dad was of the opinion that any research that justified the current slipping of academic standards should be quickly and queitly buried, while grandad was of the opinion that maybe spelling wasn’t just as important as he’d previously thought. FWIW, I agreed with Dad.

    The fact is, a large percentage of pupils leaving school, and including many who go on to university, are barely literate. We have to turn that around, because although our economy is currently strong, the economies of India, China and Africa either are or are going to catch up. We can’t compete with them on price, so we have to compete on quality, and that means proper education.

    Sorry that was a bit long. One of the joys of coming from a family of educators is having strong opinions on the subject.

  5. Indeed Chris, I do remember the guacamole incident! I also remember the time Peter Mandelson went to see his GP and complained of pains in his backside. His doctor carefully examined and then exclaimed “You have a splinter in your anus! How on earth did you manage that?”. To which Mandelson replied, “Splinter? I was trying to get the whole Cabinet up there!”.

    Hats off to Stephen for use of the phrase “hard of thinking”. I really have to plagiarise that! Molly, my condolences. Even murderers are released after 8 year in this country.

  6. Good old Wales! (Not you Walesy – I know you have done this joke before but, equally, I know you will do it again!)

    Of course spelling is important, I just included this because I found it interesting that I was able to read it so easily. It must make proof reading very difficult if the brain is so clever.

    Spelling is important because bad spelling can impede meaning.

    For example:

    “You’re” is a contraction of “you are”.

    “Your” is the possessive form of “you”.

    “Ur” means you are thirteen and should get off the internet.

    I don’t think it is fair to say that this article shows that standards are falling in our schools though, whether that is true or not.

  7. The article doesn’t show that standards are falling, but it does suggest that maybe falling standards (particularly in spelling) don’t really matter.

    But if we were to really get into what I think about education, we’d be here a while. I may rant about it on my own blog one day.

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