For the orthographically inclined, a roundup of (mis)spelling-related items in the news.
- Where's the Beach?
According to The Week magazine (Aug. 7, 2009), a pair of Swedish tourists headed for the Italian resort of Capri misspelled the name in their GPS device and ended up in the industrial town of Carpi, 400 miles away. "It's hard to understand how they managed it," said a Carpi official. "I mean, Capri is an island."
- Spell Check
MONROE, La. -- If you're going to buy something with a forged cashier's check, don't misspell "cashier's" or use an FBI office as your shipping address.
Police in Monroe, La., say they arrested a 44-year-old man from Memphis, Tenn., after he did both. He was held Friday on two counts of forgery and as a fugitive from justice in Georgia, where he is accused of a similar scheme.
The FBI called police Thursday after a Minnesota cell phone distributor called the bureau.
The company had sent 50 phones to the address for the FBI office Monroe, only to discover its $2,359.45 payment was a "cahier's check."
FBI agents saw the suspect wave down a delivery truck driver outside the bureau later Thursday, stopped the transaction, and waited for police.
(Associated Press, May 11, 2009)
- Fed Chair Is a Champ
At 12 years old, [Ben] Bernanke won the South Carolina state spelling bee, despite being initially told that he had misspelled a word. Bernanke, certain he was right, left the stage anyway. "He came back on stage and said he had spelled it correctly," his mother recalled to the Washington Post. "And he was right." Bernanke was later eliminated at the national bee when he misspelled the word edelweiss.
(Frances Romero, "Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke," Time magazine, March 16, 2009)
- A Nuisance Candidate
MANILA, Philippines -- If you can’t spell “independent,” you can be declared a nuisance candidate. As if there aren’t enough annoyances elected to office already.
The Commission on Elections has declared a congressional bet a nuisance candidate--the first election case to be resolved in Metro Manila since the local campaign began.
Several reasons were cited, including a misspelled word in the bet’s certificate of candidacy (COC): “It is telling that the respondent misspelled ‘independent’ as ‘indipendent’ if indeed respondent were an accomplished businessman,” Second Division presiding commissioner Florentino Tuason Jr. said in his decision.
(Edson C. Tandoc, Jr., "Candidate Can’t Spell, Is Declared a Nuisance," Philippine Daily Inquirer, May 6, 2007)
- Sign of a Loser
Even if the Nationals don’t lose more than the ’62 Mets, they still might craft a legacy for their unique pairing of ghastly baseball and darkly comedic sideshows. Plenty of teams lose bundles of games. Only the 2009 Washington Nationals saw their bombastic general manager resign during spring training, played part of one game not televised locally, and sent their franchise player on to the field wearing a uniform with the team name misspelled.
(Adam Kilgore, "Biggest Losers?" The Boston Globe, June 23, 2009)
- Not a G'day
Aussie adults have been left red-faced after a survey showed more than two-thirds of them have trouble spelling the word "embarrass."
The Galaxy survey asked 400 people in Sydney and Melbourne aged over 16 years to spell eight commonly misspelled words.
About 70 per cent couldn't spell "accommodation," one in two people spelled "accessory" wrong, and a quarter had trouble with "February."
Other tricky words included "guarantee," "opportunity," "eighth," and "receipt."
(Australian Associated Press, June 29, 2009)
- Another Bad Sign
Rothschild Village President Neal Torney says he's used to people misspelling his first name, but on Friday, such carelessness left him baffled. . . .
The state just erected a new sign on Interstate 39, and the only word spelled correctly on the giant, green billboard is "exit," a fact that has local officials and residents dumbfounded.
"How do I politely say it shows some incompetence on someone's part?" Torney said in between laughs over the sign, which reads "Exit 185 Buisness 51 Rothschield Schofeild."
(Brian Reisinger, "Errors Mar New Rothschild/Schofield Sign," Wisconsin Rapids Daily Tribune, July 25, 2009)
More About Spelling:
- The Spell Checker Poem
- The 200 Most Commonly Misspelled Words in English
- Quiz on 25 Commonly Misspelled Words
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