Tuesday, June 26, 2012

A Funny Thing Happened to Me on the Way to a Certain (Unnamed) Canadian City ...

This is the photo on which I put the caption that fouled up the lady in that certain city in a central province of Canada ...

You have to be careful about kidding on the Internet, because it can lead to a certain amount of confusion as I recently learned.

I was in Quebec for a few days earlier this month and had quite a lot of fun with the signs up there, which, by law, are all in French.

The gringos down here in the Lower Forty-eight have a hard time believing that there is a country in North America in one province of which they speak a language other than English. Imagine that!

So under a red stop sign that said in French "Arrét," I wrote what I thought was the humorous caption--and for reasons that I'll explain in a minute, I am having to leave a few blanks in one word of the caption--which read: "But officer! I'm from Sask-----n! How was I supposed to know that means, "Stop?"

Nothing wrong with that is there? I've always loved the sound of that certain city's name, if you know which one I mean, and I think you do.

What I didn't factor in were the Google algorithims which link things like a person's name--in this case the name "Robin Chapman"--with key words like the name of a city--in this case "Sask----n."

Who knew to avoid something like that?

This weekend I got an email from a woman in Sask-----n whose name is also Robin Chapman and who is in the investment business. She had begun receiving emails with questions about visiting Quebec that she finally figured out were meant for me.

She said her business is very confidential and was wondering if I had a middle initial I could use so people wouldn't get us confused!

She was very nice about it and I told her I didn't have a middle name, but I would think of something.

Then it dawned on me that the reason people were linking the Robin Chapman who lives in Sask----n, with me, had to do with the caption on my photo which used that city's name.

I changed the caption to read: "But officer! I'm from California! How was I supposed to know .... etc." I think this should solve the Google algorithmic link and keep the email out of her box.

Unless the Google search engine links it again with this blog post--which is why I left out so many letters in that city's name! Their search criteria are really good, so they may fill the letters in anyway and I might be causing her a problem again. Hope not. But it was too funny not to write about.

Apologies to the other RC. Fortunately for me, she thought the whole thing was funny too.

Link to my Quebec Blog That Started This Whole Thing!


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