Sunday, January 28, 2007

"We think we understand each other, but we never really do." ~ Luigi Pirandello, Italian playwright, novelist, and short story writer

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I wish that someone would invent fonts that could indicate things such as sincerity, humor, sarcasm, sadness, etc. so that we could better understand each other when typing something. Lately I feel like I have been misunderstood on so many levels of the typed word that I am ready to just put my keyboard away never to type again.

As a prime example, I recently received an email from a friend with one of those "funny" videos attached entitled "Never send a woman for an oil change". The video showed someone (there was no way to tell if it was a woman or not) pulling a vehicle into what looked to be a JiffyLube bay or one of those quick oil change type places. There was a male employee directing the person in who drove right into the big hole in the bay floor that the vehicle normally parks over. I'm sure that it's quite funny to everyone except the person who owns the car.

I sent a reply to my friend stating that I wished to object to the video on several levels (I used to work at Sears Automotive and did very nice oil changes, thank you!) and I thought (thought, mind you) that I was writing it in such a manner that he would know that I was joking. Well, apparently not as the response I got back from him was "It Is A Joke". No kidding? Really? Oh gee, I must have missed that part, thank you very much for pointing that out. And of course then I have to email him back and say "I knew that. I was joking, too". But obviously he didn't get that the first time as I neglected to advise him of that fact prior to sending the email.

Now if there was a font out there that indicated joking or if there was a universal font color for humor then there would have been no misunderstanding between myself and my friend at all. And I don't think that smiley face emoticons are the answer. Just as "SOS" is universal for send help or the color red means "Danger!" there needs to be some form of universal typing to indicate whether someone is being funny or dead serious or is dripping with sarcasm. For example, if I'm feeling melancholy or sad I should type in blue or when I'm feeling angry I could type in red; perhaps purple could be whimsical and yellow could indicate hopeful. Right now I'm beginning to think that green might work well for frustration, an emotion I'm becoming well-versed in!

This isn't my first encounter with a form of misunderstanding this week and I'm pretty sure it won't be my last anytime soon as, try as I might, I can't type voice inflection; you can't see that I'm laughing or smiling or maybe even crying when I'm typing something; and if you don't know me pretty well there is probably no way you can tell when I'm being sarcastic or serious. I work in communications; I don't like being misunderstood on the job or at home and I sure the heck don't like being misunderstood on the Internet either but it seems to be happening a lot lately.

Suggestions anyone? And I ask that in all sincerity!

8 comments:

  1. Hey Linda, This is a great post (sincere). I think the best we can do is to hope that people are on the same wavelength as yourself, or at least willing to accept that everyone has different thoughts and feelings, otherwise blogging would be no fun at all!(amused).

    Claire xxx

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  2. Thanks, Claire (appreciative!) and I hope you don't mind (inquisitive), I added you to my blogroll so that I can check back on your page often (excited!)!

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  3. Don't Mind at all!(Happy). Will add you now(Happy)

    Claire xxx

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  4. Thanks Linda, i must admit I had fun.

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  5. You are so RIGHT. I am a very sarcastic person, and it gets me in trouble a lot when I write to someone! Actually, it sometimes gets me in trouble in person too! Could we just have a card we hold up with the different colors that tell our true feelings/mood?!

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  6. I don't have any answers for your ffont question. I wanted to thank you for the post. We are fine now. Life is WAY too short to stay angry at any one.

    Have a great day!

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  7. Linda ~ We all have trouble being misunderstood in print. But I think your font idea is a good one! I do like your blog and hope we can continue to be blog friends and debate issues (well, maybe NOT!! on the debate...) Juuuusst kidding. Just a little humor there. (or not...I think I'm having an "off" day.) I feel so misunderstood.
    Have a great day and don't stress so much. SuperMom can't be down for long!
    Mimi

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  8. That is a wonderful post and should be plastered all over the blogging world!!!!

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