Thursday, March 14, 2013

The gay-est mistake

This week, I accidentally called someone Gay.

I don't mean Gay like the orientation, nor do I mean "called someone gay" like I screamed that word at them across a crowded room. 

GAY like I wrote that a COUNCIL MEMBER'S NAME was Gay. 
In 22,000 copies of the newspaper I write for. 

His real name is Guy. 

(face slap) 

There is no one to blame but myself for this fuck-up royale (with cheese), and I spent the majority of yesterday internally kicking my own ass à la Jim Carey in Liar, Liar. 

"WHY DID I TYPE 'GAY??' WHAT KIND OF FINGER MUSCLE MEMORY IS THAT??? I NEVER TYPE THE WORD GAY! I wailed to my immediate family members, defeated and embarrassed.

"Everyone makes mistakes," my mom told me on the phone, probably chuckling through my tears. "It was a typo."

YEA, A SUPER GAY TYPO! I screamed.

(This was almost as bad as the time I wrote that a mayor's name was "Carol" instead of "Carl." Crap.)

I hate f*cking up at work. I really do. I'd rather eat dirt. 
I'd rather make-out with a turtle.

Have you ever effed up at work? Please tell me you've effed up at work. 

I like to think it's inevitable when you've worked in an industry for seven years.


I took solace in a YAHOO.COM front page article I saw this week about "five things to do when you mess up at work," because they must think enough people make mistakes that we need a guide for dealing with them. 

"Learn from them," was one of the groundbreaking tips. 

OK. I made a note to always search for the word "gay" in every article I write from now on and remove it. 

I also remembered that I saw The Daily Show this week where Jon Stewart apologized for accidentally calling a legislator from Mississippi racist when he wasn't racist at all. Which then begged the question, is it worse to call someone racist or gay? 

Ha. Just kidding. I didn't CALL him Gay. 

I identified him as Gay. CRAP. CRAP. CRAP. 

For those of you who have made eff-ups at work, welcome to the club. It's not a fun club. 
It includes groveling apologies.

My apology was sent to said council member after being alerted to my mistake by someone else hours after the newspaper was delivered to every single home and business in the city.

"Are you the reporter that called the councilman 'gay'?" a guy asked me. 


"Yea, at the end of the article when you write about who voted in favor or against that thing, you write that his first name is Gay."

My mouth dropped and I couldn't make out any audible noise for a minute. 

"I personally thought it was funny," he added.

"NOOOOOOO," I finally said aloud, addressing myself more than anyone else.

I then excused myself and completely freaked out all the way back to the office.


When I got my hands on a paper, I wanted to believe it wasn't true - maybe he had a coffee stain on his copy and the U looked like an A! - but there it was, clear as day: GAY. 


I immediately wrote an email to him entitled "apology" and wrote that I was so, so, so (three so's) sorry about the typo and I will run a correction and I promise it will never happen again. 

I hit send and then banged my head on my desk.

Not even a half-hour later, my new email alert rang. I peeled my face up from the desk and saw my inbox. It was from him. Re: apologies.


I stared at the screen, not opening the email.

"OH MY GOD HE'S PROBABLY SO MAD!" I thought. He wasn't the friendliest council member to me in the first place.

I was SURE he would respond with a "who do you think you are" email, and possibly refer to my hair color. 

So I didn't open it. 

Hahahahaha Is this what being an adult is like?????

It was after 5 p.m. and I was so dejected and sad, I couldn't possibly take the licking. The email remained "unread" overnight, burning a hole through my brain.

Today, however, I put on my big girl pants and decided that I would open and read the email first thing in the morning. 


But once I sat down in front of the computer, I hesitated. 

There it was - the unread email - staring at me. 

I banged my head against my desk again. 

JUST OPEN IT, I told myself. RIGHT NOW!!!! 1,2,3, GO!!!

I clicked on the email, and then shut my eyes. Seriously.

I then opened ONE eye to peek but then, NO JOKE, my hand INSTINCTIVELY COVERED UP THE SCREEN over the body of the email. 

Yes, I blocked myself from reading the email. 

It wasn't even a conscious decision; I think it was reflexes. I was petrified.

It took a a second to realize how silly I was being- THE EMAIL ISN'T GOING AWAY, AND NEITHER IS YOUR MISTAKE, YOU RETARD - and thought if my boss walked in he'd surely wonder why I was sitting at my desk covering up the screen with my sideways hand. 

I slowly and reluctantly slid my hand down the screen, backing my chair away from the computer screen, fearing the words that would reveal themselves once my pinky slid down far enough. 

(this tactic is not recommended by

With fear in my eyes, I started to make out the top of letters and then read the message. I removed my hand.

"Don't worry about it." he wrote. That was it.





This was the opposite of calling for my resignation!!!  There was no angry mob! There was no one calling me a "little girl!"

Man, what a nice guy! 

Tonight, I'm going to have a gay old time.


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