The World Is Better With Out You In It — Is How I Initially Read This

On occasion, we all at sometime or another initially read something the wrong way — and this very phenomenon happened to me aboard an airplane during a recent flight when a member of the flight crew served a beverage to me…

The World Is Better With Out You In It — Is How I Initially Read This

Napkin Delta Air Lines

Photograph ©2018 by Brian Cohen.

…and there it was: a napkin with words printed on it. I read the message initially as The World Is Better With Out You In It; but the actual message is The World Is Better With You Out In It. My mind automatically transposed the words You and Out in what would otherwise indeed be the same message — and yes, I do understand that without is one word and not two words.

I pointed it out to one of the flight attendants; and she agreed with me after a moment of reading that napkin. She commented on how Delta Air Lines could hire someone who seems to write from the point of view that English is not the primary language, and another passenger seemed to think that the grammar was poor in general.

Summary

What the mind does sometimes is simply amazing. Fortunately, I did a double-take after reading than napkin for the first time. After all — I thought to myself — how could Delta Air Lines use such a message with which to address customers?

I also thought that the design on this napkin resembled that of Continental Airlines prior to being taken over by United Airlines — but perhaps I should save that for another time…

Photograph ©2018 by Brian Cohen.

7 thoughts on “The World Is Better With Out You In It — Is How I Initially Read This”

  1. idahost says:

    The world is better without your blog in it…

  2. GL says:

    #hardtruths

  3. r m a h says:

    this needs corrected :

    “I pointed it out to one of the flight attendants; and agreed with me after a moment of reading that napkin.”

    and no semicolon needed here because you used a conjunction :

    “She commented on how Delta Air Lines could hire someone who seems to write from the point of view that English is not the primary language; and another passenger seemed to think that the grammar was poor in general.”

    TOTALLY not trying to be annoying. love your post!

    1. Brian Cohen says:

      You are not being annoying at all, r m a h.

      I am always appreciative of your constructive comments!

  4. TC says:

    simplest fix would be replacing “with you out in it” with, ” when you are out in it”

    1. Brian Cohen says:

      I cannot argue with that, TC.

      I would not be surprised if the people who write that copy get paid rather well…

  5. Bill says:

    You guys are all missing the point entirely….it’s written exactly as it is to turn the phrase that Brian thought he was reading on its head.

    “The world is better without you in it” is a common phrase that I’ve seen leveled at others often…this rewording turns that insulting phrase into a positive one.

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