The “Most Vesicle” Executive at Noetix?

My Friend, The Dictionary

In my last post, I talked about performance reviews and promised to tell a true story about a performance review I received several years ago. I had the same job that I have now, and the same boss, Morris.  It was near the end of the year.  Morris had completed my performance review, but I was on vacation until just before New Year’s, so we didn’t bother to have a face to face meeting.  He simply emailed the performance review to me.

As I read the review, I was pleased.  It was all positive, with excellent feedback.  I wasn’t really surprised, since Morris and I spoke frequently about how things were going.  As I read, I must have skimmed over some of the initial comments.

I was reading it at home, with my wife nearby.  She asked what I reading, and, after I told her, I offered to let her have a look.  As she read, she paused at one point and questioned the following statement:

“Daryl is the consummate executive at Noetix.  I regard Daryl as perhaps the most vesicle of all the executives.”

“What does ‘vesicle’ mean?” she asked.  I replied: “I’m not sure, but I expect it’s probably good, since everything else is so positive.”  With her encouragement, I decided to look it up.  Off I went to dictionary.com and here is what I found:

      ves·i·cle   [ves-i-kuhl] –noun

1. A small sac or cyst.
2. Biology. A small bladderlike cavity, esp. one filled with fluid
3. Pathology. A circumscribed elevation of the epidermis containing serous fluid; a blister
4. Geology. A small, usually spherical cavity in a rock or mineral, formed by expansion of a gas or vapor before the enclosing body solidified

Well, that certainly wasn’t what I expected!  It’s not every day you find yourself compared to a sac of pus!

I thought about letting it drop, but instead opted to have a little fun with it.  I sent an email back to Morris:

Thank you.  I very much appreciate your praise and confidence.  I do have one question.  In the final bullet you state [the vesicle comment]

Sensing an opportunity to expand my vocabulary, I quickly went to www.dictionary.com, where I discovered this [and pasted the definition into the message]

I’m pretty sure that none of those would be considered a compliment, so I’m a bit puzzled.

A few hours later, I received a short response – my first email of the new year from my boss:

“F*$% you – I meant versatile. But my misspelling may work as well.”

Since that day, it’s been a running joke, within the company (and within my family) that I continue to be “the most vesicle.”  I treat it as a badge of honor.

For now…I’ll leave you with this thought:

Spell check is not foolproof – it might validate a misspelled word.  Sometimes that can be pretty funny.

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