Opinion: Now read this


Until recently, I didn’t realize that instead of using my sausage fingers to text a message, I can press this tiny microphone symbol and then simply talk into my phone. Magically, the words are transcribed. Am I that stupid? No, I’m 71.

The discovery of this simple feature has changed my life. No longer do I send messages that say things like: “I gat your email anf hipe to see yiu doon.”

“Wait, don’t you have spell check?” you might ask. I don’t use spellcheck. If I type principal instead of principle, it doesn’t get corrected and it makes me seem ignorant when I text a friend saying, “I stand up for my principals.” It looks like I’m complimenting local school officials.

The other day I was in my home office texting my friend, Bob, and I said into the phone, “Can we meet at Starbucks tomorrow?” As the text was being transcribed, my wife heard me from upstairs and thought I was talking to her.

“Dick, why are we meeting at Starbucks tomorrow?”

I yelled upstairs, “I wasn’t talking to you! You and I are not going to Starbucks tomorrow.”

My message read: “Can we meet at Starbucks, tomorrow?  I wasn’t talking to you. You and I are not going to Starbucks tomorrow.” Then, I accidentally sent the text. I got this back from Bob:

“Dick, are we meeting at Starbucks or not?  And if you aren’t talking to me, why are we getting together?”

I texted back and told Bob that I was actually talking to my wife but the text said that I was not talking to Mary Ellen, so Bob thinks she and I aren’t on speaking terms. See how rumors get started.

This morning, Mary Ellen overheard me saying this into my phone: Hey it’s me exclamation point I’d like to get together Monday dot dot dot Will that work for you question mark

“That is so strange,” she said from the kitchen. “I know you are a grammar nut, but I just heard you talking and punctuating your own speech.”

I hollered back, “I do not want to talk about this ever again. Period.”


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