Lost in Translation

Lost in Translation

While growing up, I wanted to be an Archeologist who wrote cricket columns for Sportsweek (publication in India), or a writer who went on archeological digs (Agatha Christie!). Ended up taking no courses that were English or History related and they were relegated to a hobby and soon forgotten, even writing. A pity. Then came the social media age and I found blogging and even facebook posts sometimes. A perfect outlet for me to write about what I love (now running/tri instead of cricket).

I used to be quite a decent writer with a few published articles in newspaper columns and magazines even when I was in high school. But all those years in between of not writing influenced me to only write for myself on the blog (and my journal that holds things that I write down but I will never share with anyone), not looking at how it might be perceived by an audience.

And guess somewhere there started the trouble. 

The saying “If you don’t use it, you lose it” could be applied here. Over the past few weeks, I have realized that I seem to have lost the ability to communicate effectively with words. I wasn’t a big time writer to begin with, but with everyday writing used to communicate thoughts and ideas, I atleast  never got into trouble for not being able to communicate the what I was writing about.

Like the silly incident when I wrote on a grocery list from Costco – Almonds. 
There is only type of almonds I have ever bought which is the whole almonds in a clear bag. Mr. FauxTriathlete comes home with sliced almonds. Why? Because it is healthy to sprinkle it on your cereal and easier to have sliced almonds than whole almonds. Where did I miss communicating that I use almonds in smoothies and we don’t even have cereal at home!

Or the time I forwarded an email joke to a friend and put my left foot in my mouth.  
It was a satirical piece that made mild fun of something she is very passionate about. I support her in that, but I’m not as passionate and I have pulled her legs many a times over that and vice-versa. Yet, this forwarded email led to misunderstandings; thankfully since cleared away because it was a genuine ‘I don’t know why you are saying this’ on both sides. But yet another case of me not being able to effectively state that things were a joke.

Or the other time that I caused domestic chaos when I texted Mr. FauxTriathlete if we could move our plans by an hour so I’d have time to get my run in.
Moving the time was perceived as my decreased interest in our plans. Because I obviously have  prioritized my run over our plans. Never mind that I had only that window to my long run in, and no harm would’ve come out of moving our plans back. And never mind that the long run (and now bike) has been on the family calendar since it showed up on training peaks.

One of the worst instance was when I referenced something vaguely and it was misunderstood by the wrong person. Twice.
It totally sank me when I realized how the vague words could’ve been misunderstood. But it makes me even more sad and helpless when the person who misunderstood is someone I think the world about. And I would move worlds to clear up things and regain their good opinion/trust/whatever it was that got chipped by my ineffective way of writing things. (I guess these last incidents was what prompted me to write this post.).

Moral of the story: 

  • Think twice before you type. 
  • Read everything five times before hitting the publish/send button. 
  • Keep everything on the blog as close to simple running/tri stuff as needed (this one instance excused!).
Add Facebooking, Blogging, Tweeting to the list!
Add Facebooking, Blogging, Tweeting to the list!

Not running related (even though some of the post references missed communication about training) – this blog post one that I’m writing because I want to say it. I am not going promote this post or pass it on to friends and followers to read. If you stumble on it because you like to read what I write, please do leave a comment. I’d love to hear your thoughts.

And if the people who inspired this post happen to read it (very unlikely since I don’t plan to post the link anywhere and even the hubby doesn’t read my blog), please know that my intentions were not to cause any distress either during the circumstances described or now in writing about it. The tone and theme and banter is so easily lost in translation. No hard feelings and lots of love and sap and all that. 

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