Sometimes, the best mussar (hard to translate - "rebuke" is close-ish) that you can get is the kind that comes straight from your own mouth.
I sent my last blog post in to a blog I follow that features sad, (mostly) true instances of the frum (religious) world embarrassing itself. I noticed that there have been more guest posts lately, so I figured it was worth a shot, and if something came of it - great.
I didn't realize that he'd post it the next day.
Naturally, my eyes flew straight to the comments. Most agreed with me and expressed similar frustrations. Then I saw one that made me feel like a complete and total idiot.
"Since we're on the topic of spelling mistakes, the word is 'minuscule.'"
That's right, ladies and gentlemen. In the very article in which I spat a blistering criticism of factual errors and typos, I committed the crime I set out to condemn.
In my defense, the Blogger spell-check showed me that I was in the clear. But as I was writing this post, I experimented and typed "dsdfij." It said no misspellings found. So I could cop out and blame technology, but that doesn't seem fair. It was my mistake. I didn't proofread carefully enough. I have to take responsibility.
But if that's not a message, I don't know what is.
It's so easy to notice another's faults, to expose someone else's dirty laundry for the world to see and mock. We have no trouble pointing out that someone talks too much, or leaves their dishes unwashed, or never says "thank you." But oftentimes, we forget that we're far from perfect ourselves.
I did email the blogger to see if my mistake could be corrected, but as far as I know it's still there. Perhaps it's better that way. It's a testament to the fallibility of human beings. Of me.
Thank you, G-d, for sending me this lesson in humility and humanity. May spelling errors be the worst mistakes I ever make.
Er, make that received.