Two co-eds were discussing through text messages the nice young man sitting next to them in class: “Oh, he was so cute, and I really liked the smell of his colon.”

Fi yuo cna raed tihs, yuo hvae a sgtrane mnid, too. I cdnuolt blveiee taht I cluod aulaclty uesdnatnrd waht I was rdanieg. The phaonmneal pweor of the hmuan mnid, aoccdrnig to a rscheearch sutdy at Cmabrigde Uinervtisy satets it dseno’t mtaetr in waht oerdr the ltteres in a wrod are, the olny iproamtnt tihing is taht the frsit and lsat ltteer be in the rghit pclae. The rset can be a taotl mses, and you can sitll raed it whotuit a pboerlm. Tihs is bcuseae the huamn mnid deos not raed ervey lteter by istlef, but the wrod as a wlohe. Azanmig, huh? Yaeh, and I awlyas tghuhot slpeling was ipmorantt!

In the world of marketing today, it is amazing how many misspelled words are used. If a company cannot take the time to use proper grammar and spelling, one might wonder if they’ve taken proper measures to manufacture the product itself. Or have they cut the same corners there, also? It appears the worst examples come from companies overseas that use a translator (not a very good one) to translate the instructions from another language into English.

For example, in the English language there are three spellings of the word to, too, two that all have different meanings, and yet how many times have we seen “to” for the meaning of “also?”

Someone might ask, “What’s the big deal?” When a person attends a musical concert and some soloist plays a B flat instead of a B natural, it’s a mistake and reflects on his or her musical talent. The difference between an air ball and a swish in basketball is only a few inches — one is a work of beauty and the other is a total blunder that surely the opposing fans will bring to your attention. The difference between a completed pass and an incomplete pass in football, or a ball and a strike in baseball, again is a difference of inches. Striving for perfection is expected in these instances; why are we not insisting on the same standards regarding our communication techniques?

You don’t “loose” a ball under the fence, and you don’t wear “lose” fitting pants. “Two” is a number that comes after one. “Too” means also, and “to” is a preposition or adverb normally meaning toward a person, place or thing.

Some might find it understandably difficult to properly use and spell some words, as the English language has many exceptions to the rules. Take “I” before “E” except after “C”. This is OK unless you are a “feisty,” “weird” “foreigner” who spends “their” “leisure” time “seizing” “veins” from gold mines.

However, with the technology in place today, is there really an excuse for improper spelling? Although in the end, proofreading one’s work is, by far, the best solution. Certainly, texting on cellphones has not helped the issue at all, as a simple “U” can replace “You” and be perfectly understood.

However, in the business world, do we accept these errors or do we understand that this negatively reflects on the company and products produced by the company and avoid doing business with them? Along with this, aren’t we taking ourselves a step away from preserving our own English language? Like the college co-eds, I’d like to think there’s a difference between the smell of the cute guy’s cologne and his colon.

tschumacher@htk.com

Tim Schumacher represents Strategic Financial Partners in Hays.