Thursday, March 18, 2010

Comma-tose

Right after posting about punctuation (thanks to a book I am currently reading at leisure, "Eats, Shoots and Leaves"), I got called for MISSING a missing comma!

Flashback (1997-1998): Once upon a time, the Advanced English class staffed  The Ruralite, the school organ of U.P. Rural High School. Ms. Connie Apalin-Gaffud, the adviser during my time, always reminded the staff that the last person to see a publication's proof before it hits the press is responsible for last-minute checking of really obvious errors (normally on spelling or grammar in titles and captions). At one point, I was tasked to bring the Junior-Senior Prom program to the press for printing. Before going there, at least three people reviewed the text; all agreed that it was ready to print (including me). Nobody noticed that one of the names in the program was wrong. I was reprimanded for not spotting the mistake before the program was mass produced.

Fast Forward to 2010, deja vu moment: Thirteen years later, a proof of a brochure was last seen on my hands before the brochure got mass-printed. Six people (including me and the editor, Tess Rola) reviewed the text and approved its printing. Nobody noticed that the typically sneaky comma was absent from its usual post! Its absence wouldn't have been too conspicuous if it weren't in the front page and the text wasn't written in large font. My attention was called because of this particular missing comma.

Oh well, seeing a draft too often normally makes me miss the small but obvious mistakes. When these errors are pointed out, I often hit my forehead and exclaim, "How in the world did I miss that?!" I am happy with what Ma'am Apalin and Tita Tess said when mistakes were pointed out, "It's not the end of the world."