Best. typo. ever (at least in a poem from a tiny college in the south)

A little necessary back story:

The college where I work is very small and mostly offers technical degrees (paralegal/various medical assisting/etc.) to mostly non-trad students. There’s almost no liberal arts courses, but they do have English classes. Each year the best papers and best poems submitted for classes are, with the student’s permission of course, published in a yearly literary journal.

Okey-dokey- there supposedly is an editorial review process, but it’s evidently not as exhaustive as it might be, plus there’s probably an over reliance on electronic spell check. As those who’ve used spell-check know, if it is a word- just the wrong word- spell check doesn’t alert you.

Okey dokey reduxey- one student turned in a poem for an English class and even entered it in the yearly poetry competition here. This being Alabama, a disproportionate number of the entries are religious in nature (you’d be amazed how many things rhyme with Jesus saves). This particular one is about God healing during a loss- I think- though perhaps an OT verse would have worked better:

They printed his poem in the journal, but with one little typo. I’ve blotted out the student’s name and anything else that could conceivably I.D. him, but otherwise the image is unaltered:

See if you can spot the typo

Okay, epilogue:

Worst part- the student won an award for the original version of the poem- and it’s completely plagiarized. Another student recognized it immediately as something read at a relative’s funeral and it turns out it’s all over the Internet. At least now— it’s a lot more original. (The student, like the subject of “his” poem, is in over his head in deep shit.)

So God is the guy?


Sometimes I think God has also placed that around me. But then, I don’t believe in God. So I think it’s just the pulp and paper mills from Quebec causing the odor.

What’s particularly funny to me is that the typo casts the verses that come after it in a whole new light as well.

…I could swear I’ve seen that exact poem (with the more appropriate “arms” instead of the typo seen here) in memorial ads placed in the paper I work for. Either this kid’s poem travelled far and fast to Connecticut, or he’s not as original as one might hope.

Somewhere, Terrance and Phillips are laughing.

“Helen Steiner Rice”?
Huh huh Huhhuhhuhhuhhuh… he said “anus”.

It’s prehensile! :eek:

I intend to get to the bottom of this.

Where’s that photoshop of God in the sky, spreading out the heavens for rain?

What a beautiful metaphor…not merely passing into the Lord’s embrace, but being assumed into His body…

:rolleyes: …not. Most emphatically not.

Actually, this is no ordinary typo. Its funniness aside, it’s not likely to have been a keyboard transposition. Although N and M are neighbors, U is a ways away, and R farther yet.

I suspect the culprit was an OCR program dealing with handwriting - cursive “rm” could very easily become cursive “nu”. Or a xerox (of “Helen Steiner Rice”?). Or deliberate pranksterism.

So far I’ve e-mailed that to like 10 people. That’s the funniest thing I’ve ever seen.

My sister always tries to get her kids to write this in their friends yearbooks. She has a warped sense of humor. The original version, that is, not the one about the asshole.

To be fair, punctuation is hard. It’s easy to end up with a misplaced colon.

That’s some mighty fine glurge there. Did the student lift it from a Hallmark card?

Um, yeah, I recognized it after the first two lines. That thing or a version of it is in the paper at least once a week. What a maroon.

He only takes the BEST!

Perfect reply

Someone else mentioned Helen Steiner Rice. She writes really glurgy religious poems.


I feel a lot better about having sent my boss’s boss a “screen shit” yesterday. (I noticed it after I sent it. I debated apologizing, but then thought there was a chance she didn’t notice it. I mean, I sent it trying to explain how patrons accidentally change the language on their computers to Russian, so as you can imagine it kind of was a screen shit.)

Holy shit!

Plagiarism and an embarrasing typo and now it’s all over the internet.

What an embarrasment to that student.

Must have wrecked him.

Eh, I withheld his name and the name of the journal, but as for any embarassment it caused him: to quote Mr. Houseman, he eeeaaarrrnnnned it. As is he’ll probably take a retroactive F for that course, but at many schools he’d be expelled for something that blatant.