The satnav (or GPS) is a brilliant invention. And mine has come in quite handy, despite is being nearly 7 years outdated. However, mine has a distinct quirk: it takes me to the backside of airports rather than the passenger terminals. Without fail. Detroit Metro? Check. Cherry Capital Airport, Traverse City? Maintenance barn. Mobile, Alabama? I could see the tower… across the field.

The airport location function is close, but not quite right. I suppose it technically is correct, but unless I am credentialed like Neil Armstrong, I am not getting through those gates and into the airport that way.

But I fear there are other things like this. The “close, but not quite” items in this world. Functionally fair, but they sort of miss the mark in terms of real success.

Example 2. Being the single girl that I am, virtually all other friends make it their mission to set me up with someone. I’m generally game, but will ask cursory questions in advance. Knowing that I play soccer 1-2 times per week and am a triathlete, skier, and wakeboard maven, observe the following exchange I had with one of my soccer teammates this season:
Teammate: “I should introduce you to Phil. He’s in my department at General Corp. He’s super nice.”
Me: “Is he athletic?”
Teammate: “He watches a lot of sports.”
Close. But not quite.

The mini disc player (and of course, mini discs).

The Segway.

The Pontiac Aztec.

New Coke.

Each one is close. But there’s just something not quite right about it.

It’s sort of like a spell-check blessing, but a grammar wonk’s oversight: The Mayor will address recent city violence in tonight’s pubic forum. Close, but not quite.

Close. But not quite.


Retro re-post of the day: A Lesson in Language, v.2 (Moving on to 5-Letter Words).


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