I had such fun just now writing a post for a basic writing pedagogy class I’m teaching that I had to refer to it here. This is my blog; I’m the writer and I’m the audience; that post had to have some life in this location. It’s a bit of text that is more me than I might even be comfortable admitting, but there it is, part of history now.
I don’t do this too self-referential thing too often, but it was a post that was such a blast to write, and it’s prose that really addresses an internal crisis I have all the time: I loathe a typo. But I make them and so do the writers I admire the most. If I let that stop me, I’d never write again.
Still, I was exultant when I found a typo on the blog of a writer I adore (a professor at a university on the West Coast)–I even took a picture of the page so I could remember that I am not alone. It wasn’t as if I thought I was better than he is (because of one typo–so not a big deal), but it was exactly like this: if he could make that kind of error, then he was human, too, and perhaps admitting my human capacity for error was okay. Error is only as catastrophic as we allow it to be… not like a misplaced comma or a misspelled word is like dropping the heart in a transplant surgery: “Oh, nuts. Jim, could you grab that heart? It skittered over by your foot. Slippery devil.”
Would you say my being comforted by finding one tiny error on an admired blogger’s site was the writerly equivalent of watching Cops? I’d like to think not, but I suspect that’s exactly what it was.