For the ultimate in introverted passive aggression, you can’t beat text messaging. Who knew the technology would become so indispensable to me?

But be careful. When too hastily thumbing a note to someone, it’s far too easy to muddy the message with entirely the wrong word. If you can train your phone well enough, that word-suggestion feature can be handy — for proper nouns and unusual spellings, especially. I, on the other hand, still can’t find the quotation marks or parentheses on my phone. There is little hope for me.

For instance, I can’t really use those abominable abbreviations so common among nearly everyone younger than me. (The title of this post is somewhat misleading, then.) I have to teach my phone almost any abbreviation. It can backfire, though. I taught my phone the abbreviation “VM” for “voice mail.”

Clever, eh?

Not when you’re trying to type “to” … a word that comes up, I have found, an awful damn lot.

There is some comfort at least in knowing that my phone expects something closer to Standard English from me.

Worse, I have somehow managed to program in some completely ridiculous substitutions. Whenever I type “at,” the number 28 appears. Instead of “can,” I get “226” — which is considerably less useful.

Often the effect is just comical. Once while thumbing out the word “pimp” I got “shop.” (I forget the context. Does it matter?) Clicking through the substitutions was almost almost poetic:


Here are a few more interesting accidental substitutions I have come across recently:

  • Hate yields have
  • Male: make
  • Save: rate
  • Season: reason
  • Soon: room
  • Note: move
  • Go: in
  • Fat: eat
  • Doll: folk
  • Brian: asian
  • Home: good
  • Stick: quick
  • Saloon: salmon
  • Kind: line
  • Of: me
  • If: he
  • Mine: mind
  • Much: ouch
  • And my favorite… Pew: sex

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the untallied hours

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