Why You Should Always Proofread

Day 222 (Or is this Day 1 now?) - Oops!So I walked into a meeting at work today and everyone was laughing very, very hard. It turns out that I had made a small typo when I submitted some revisions to a project charter we were working on. Being a writing nerd such as I am, I always insist that acronyms be spelled out in full the first time they are used in a document, as the reader may not be familiar with said acronym. So, I’d edited the project charter to spell out what one of the acronyms stood for. But I left out one tiny little letter. How could one little letter make such a difference that everyone was roaring with laughter, you ask?

The project charter was for work on HIV/STIs – remember, I work in healthcare – and the acronym I was trying to spell out was MSM, which stands for “men who have sex with men.” But I’d written “men who have sex with me.”

Needless to say, I have not, and will not, live this one down. And that there is now an acronym of MSB.

Image Credit: Posted by Kate Stumbler on Flickr.

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  • I used to work at an LGTBQ community centre. We ran coming out groups. I sent out the new poster to my huge distribution list with the subject line: Men’s Coming group. Luckily I didn’t work there for very long!

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  • At the Three Bridges community clinic the other day I noticed the support group for gay men with addictions (a talking “process” group) is called… wait for it… “Taking It Deep!”

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  • 🙂 that’s so funny!!

    sorry though, but oh so funny. At least your coworkers seem to have humour. That in itself is worth a million.

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  • As I mentioned on Twitter, this story just keeps giving and giving – I’ve told it to multiple people, and they all laugh just as much as I did when I first read this post!

    Most recently, I told it to a friend at work, in a meeting. After she stopped literally crying with laughter, she told me about the last time she gave blood. The nurse was going down the list of questions, saying “have you ever injected illegal drugs” (no), “have you ever slept with anyone who’s injected drugs?” (no), “have you travelled to [some list of prohibited countries] in the last year?” (no), “have you had a tattoo within the last year?” (no), “have you slept with a man, even once?” (no – wait – YES!)

    She’d been using the list of questions meant for male donors, not female… my friend was slightly freaked out, because she’d never answered one of that list of questions in the positive ever before!

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