Another Silly Typing Error

The nature of typing is such that
there are none but silly errors to make:
renowned only for pettiness and an appearance of stupidity.
I don’t want to make silly little errors;
I want to make big important errors.
I want to make at least one error
which fills my supervisor with such horror
she blanches and almost faints
and then runs to the manager’s office.
The manager turns pale and stares out the window
then resolutely picks up the phone
to page the big boss at his golf game.
Then the big boss cones running into the office
and the manager closes his door
and hours go by.
The other women don’t talk,
or talk only in whispers,
pale as ghosts but relieved it isn’t them.
An emergency stockholders’ meeting has to be called
about which we hear only rumours.
I am offered a choice of either
fourteen years severance pay or early retirement,
to make sure I don’t accidentally
get a job with a subsidiary, allied company, or supplier.
A question is asked in Parliament
to which the Prime Minister replies by assuring the House
most typists only make silly typing errors
which only rarely affect the balance of trade.
The only time I get to talk about it
is when I am interviewed (anonymously) for an article
about the effect of typing errors on- the economy.

October, 1986

Copyright 2009, Helen Potrebenko. For permissions please visit


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