All Aboard the Pubic Express

OK, I'm going to ask you to do something. Please scroll down and read the first sentence of the post preceding this one. Now, read this short email that I got from my mother today:
Have you ever been sitting on pubic transit...?!

You might want to take a different train!

Love, Mom
Folks, I consider myself a careful writer. Blog posts, emails, essays, tombstone inscriptions, whatever it is, I check it twice. I proofread diligently and yet somehow I managed to let "pubic transit" slip by me. PUBIC TRANSIT! Now, I realize most people probably wouldn't get their panties in a twist over something like this, but I live off catching other people's mistakes. (Well, I don't actually live off it because no one will pay me to be a copy editor, but you get the idea.) I can't very well go around telling everyone how they've erred if I can't get sentence #1 right.

Normally, when a mistake becomes apparent to me after a post has been published, I slyly make the edit, re-publish, and pretend nothing ever happened (kind of like when you accidentally let one go in front of your friends, cough conspicuously, and hope they mistook it for street noise). But this cannot be ignored. I mean, pubic transit. How many of you noticed that?! I am simply mortified, imagining you all throwing your heads back in the wicked cackle of a schoolyard bully. Me, my little baby blog with it's nice wood paneling and regrettably corny title, the laughing stock of the blogging community!

Of course it's a vain and lonely enterprise, writing a blog. People may have noticed my typo and laughed -- or, worse yet, hardly anyone has even read it. I am reminded of something my favorite blogger, Petunia Face, wrote in a post from the beginnings of her blog, which has since become the favorite and delight of many adoring readers.
"Blogging is a bit like going to a cocktail party where you don’t know anyone. You hang up your coat and stand there feeling a bit naked, hoping your dress is the correct attire. Nobody hands you a drink at first, there are no appetizers and you don’t really know what to do with your hands. All around people are laughing at other people’s stories. You feel fringe.
So you just open your mouth and start talking to the air. It feels funny at first, speaking into a void. You tell your stories and maybe someone smiles at you. Hands you a drink. A plate of bite-sized mushroom quiche even though you hate mushrooms so you just nibble around the edges to be polite. You keep talking and suddenly someone laughs. Someone else talks back. Introduces you to her friend. And suddenly you are not alone anymore, your words floating up into nothing. They are heard. You are heard."
Again, you may say the typo is no big deal, but if blogging is like a cocktail party, then such a mistake is like having a booger peeking around the corner of my nostril. Like having spinach in my teeth all night long, or walking out of the bathroom with my skirt tucked into my thong. Like any number of awful things when all you really want is for them to like you. When all you really want is to be heard.  And we all know that no one's gonna keep talking to the girl with a booger hanging out of her nose.

So readers, I hereby invite you to laugh with me (and please, not at me). The pube train is now leaving the station -- on or off?


  1. Pube train, wooo wooo! In all seriousness, I read the post and loved it, and did NOT notice the typo. And I, too, pride myself on catching other people's mistakes. Don't fret.

    To emphasize my point, read this article about five mistakes everyone should make; in particular, the one where author Mary Pipher suffered the dreaded cocktail party indignities you mention but IN REAL LIFE! And they still liked her.

    Also, Petunia Face also apologizes on her blog for letting one slip and blaming her child (http://petuniafacedgirl.blogspot.com/2010/09/monday-morning-shame-spiral.html). I'm sure her lovely readers are only laughing with her, feeling comfort in knowing that they aren't the only one to have embarrassed themselves in public...

  2. you know why i don't notice it? because i RARELY proofread my posts. maybe a once over as i'm writing but that's it. part of it is because i allow myself that luxury. to free write. i've always hated rewriting things and i figure if i'm not getting paid for it, then there is no need to stress myself out.
    i will read my posts later and see the typos and think 'wow, people probably think i don't know its there. that i don't know proper grammar. that i can't spell. that i'm lazy.'
    and then i think, well...the last one is sort of right.
    the pubic train rides on.

  3. I apparently glossed right over that word, not just the first time I read that particular post, but agin, just now, when you instructed me, your dutiful reader to go back and read it. Yep, missed it again. Even your mom's email to you~ missed that one too! That's why I don't even have aspirations of editing other people's writing (well, maybe scientific journals...I'm working on that). I am hoping to get more into blogging...just need to find the time. Glad to hear to are enjoying life on pubic transit! Love you! Will you be in Colo springs for grandpa's b-day?