When was the last time you realized that something you did for nearly your entire life was wrong, and all those years you were blind to it?
I was drafting something in Word on the subject of baseball. I wrote the word "cletes," as in spikes on the bottom of a baseball player's shoes, and my spell checker flagged it. I immediately noticed, because of all the things I do in this world, spelling is one of the best. My spell checker almost never flags anything but proper nouns not in its dictionary, and foreign words.
I highlighted "cletes," held down the control key, and clicked on it. One of the spelling suggestions: "cleats." I had never, ever spelled this word any other way but "cletes." I never remember seeing it in any other way.
Clete itself, when googled, gets over 59,000 hits and this is because Clete is a proper name, and the first name of a famous third baseman for the New York Yankees and the Atlanta Braves, Clete Boyer. Clete Boyer played long ago, when I was just getting interested in baseball. I'm 100% sure I decided to misspell "cleat" because of Clete Boyer. Psychologists must have a term for this psychological tic-- and another one for those who obsess on them enough to write about them.
Clearly, I should've just used "baseball spykes."
Photo: Durham Bulls Athletic Park, August 19, 2005