Another misused oldie

rogersgeorge on June 23rd, 2010

I’m used to seeing gaffes, typos, and solecisms in the writings of Internet marketers, but this is from the reasonably well-respected Chicago Sun-Times:

“Idle hands are the devil’s plaything, the old saying goes.”

The context is a review of Microsoft’s new hand-waving game interface, so the reference is a nice pun, but the writer got it wrong. Idle hands are the Devil’s workshop, according to Ben Franklin and my English teacher (Mrs. Clemens was even referring to me, perish the thought!), though versions of this aphorism have been traced clear back to Chaucer.

A bit of doggerel:

Internet searches
Are easy to carry out,
So check your quotes
If you have the slightest doubt

—and it wouldn’t hurt to check even if you don’t have any doubt. And that’s our lesson for today, students: Check your work.

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