Friday, August 17, 2012

Are You Angered or Enraged?

Spell check, like San Andreas, has its faults. One of them is that it is unable to recognize a mistyped word when the flub results in another, correctly spelled word. If you were to type dariy instead of dairy, for instance, spell check would be all over it. If you accidentally typed diary when you meant dairy, however, spell check would be about as useful as a chess set to a prisoner in solitary confinement. When it comes to anagrams — words or phrases created by rearranging the letters of other words or phrases — spell check is no finder. It's no friend, either. (Get it? Friend. Finder. Anagrams!)

Programmers have yet to develop a spell check sophisticated enough to recognize a misspelled word, if said word is in the program's dictionary. (If such a sophisticated program does exist, I'm not aware of it.) It's why spell check doesn't recognize incorrect homophone usage (their instead of there, for example), and it's why spell check fails to detect anagram mix-ups.

Let's take an anagram-related test. I'll provide four sentences with flaws that remain beyond spell check's reach. You must succeed where spell check fails. Here goes:

  1. The How concert ended with a stirring rendition of "Magic Sub."
  2. I freaked out when I spotted the art in the subway.
  3. If you attend a standing-room-only fart party, it's best to avoid eating baked beans.
  4. Hearing the voice of the coroner really buoyed my spirits.
Speaking of anagrams, here are a few humorous anagrammatic phrases I came across online. Enjoy.

Jay Leno = Enjoy L.A.
A decimal point = I'm a dot in place
George Bush = He bugs Gore
An old shoe = Has no sole
Jennifer Aniston = Fine in torn jeans
Dormitory = Dirty room
Eleven plus two = Twelve plus one
Mother-in-law = Woman Hitler 


  1. Love the JA one. :) Wish my name was an anagram for "Enjoy L.A." - or, even better, "I love L.A." :)

    1. I’m sorry your name isn’t as anagrammatically beneficial as you would have wished. For what it’s worth, your name, when rearranged, can become “Lady Sin.” Hmm…