June 06, 2005
Gratuitous Cranky Commuter Posting (TM)
One of my all-time favorite series of short stories are those about the adventures of Major Sinclair Yates (aka the Irish R.M.) by E.E. Somerville and Martin Ross. I've got a copy of the complete collected stories (they were published originally in three sets) that was put out about the time Masterpiece Theatre ran the Peter Bowles dramatization (which I didn't like, but that's another story), but I've read it so many times that it is literally coming apart in my hands.
Recently, I noticed that the stories (or at least some of them) had been republished a few years ago, so I thought I would buy Some Experiences of an Irish R.M. in order to supplement my tattered old veteran. And having finished up Evelyn Waugh's Sword of Honor trilogy yet again, I thought I would take a canter through my new book for my Metro reading.
Ha! I don't know much about the publishers J.S. Sanders & Co. of Nashville, TN, but I do know this - they apparently seem to think that automated spell-check is a good enough substitute for a human being actually reading a text. Well, it isn't. I found no fewer than three different examples of printing errors in the first two stories - "house" substituted for "horse" and so on - that could have been picked up by a high school newspaper editor.
This sort of thing drives me crazy. It is extremely sloppy and unprofessional. And the worst part of it is the distraction - now I am aware of the problem, I keep looking for it, waiting for the next clunker. It's like having a nice summer evening out on the porch ruined because you're too busy listening for the next mosquito on its way in to bite you.
Thank you so bloody much.