DEAR MISS MANNERS: Sometimes at work, colleagues will ask me to review an important document they have written. They are seeking my input on the content, not the grammar.
However, I often find grammatical errors. I’m no expert, but I do have a background in journalism and have been trained to find grammatical mistakes. If the error is glaring, such as accidentally omitting a word, I will point it out.
But if the error is small, or one that few people would even recognize as an mistake, I don’t mention it. After all, I don’t want to be that obnoxious, nitpicking co-worker.
Miss Manners: She shocked me with her choice of wedding colors
Miss Manners: Let husband enjoy his traditional dish
Miss Manners: Rude remark gets flippant response
Miss Manners: Horror stories not helping travelphobe
Miss Manners: Good morning? Good evening? I’m confused
Nonetheless, I wonder if it would be better to make the corrections to help my colleagues, even though I may come off as intolerable.
GENTLE READER: “Nitpicking” has gotten a bad name. Like the word “literal,” people have grown so accustomed to using it figuratively that they have forgotten the literal meaning, which is to remove the nits — lice eggs — from someone’s hair.
A child with lice should be grateful for a nitpicking parent (and if they are not, their teachers and the other parents surely are).
Similarly, a colleague who requests the services of a copy editor should be grateful when that person identifies potentially embarrassing mistakes, large or small.
Miss Manners recognizes, without accepting, that an …read more
Source:: The Mercury News – Lifestyle