Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Not my type

No three little Hebrew words instill panic and dread in the heart of even the most veteran oleh quite like the seemingly-innocuous phrase: “.תשלח\י לי מייל” (“Send me an email.”)

It begins with typing (i.e. hakladah - for the Hebraically-oriented amongst you).

In many workplaces – especially high-tech firms – English is often the email lingua franca. But if you’re a freelancer like me, you may not have that luxury.

Instead, you’re forced to rely on a combination of the “hunt and peck” method and the delusional belief that your fingers will instinctively figure out the Hebrew equivalent of “ASDFJKL;”.

Yet, to put it mildly, this doesn’t make for the most efficient of typing experiences…

But even once you somehow manage to get the correct letters on screen, your problems are far from over.

After all, now you’re stuck with a document that you’re pretty sure is rife with spelling and grammatical errors.

Because conjugating verbs or sorting out the whole male/female (shulchan echad or shulchan echat?) and singular/plural (shulchanim or shulchanot?) thing? Not exactly your strong point.

Of course, normally, you’d simply ask a native Israeli – read: any of your children who already took the bagrut in lashon - for help. But seeing as how it’s the middle of the day and all, none of the older kids are home.

And thus, you find yourself pondering that age-old question: What sounds less unprofessional – a letter written by an oleh or a letter proofread by a not-yet literate five year old?

Desperate, you go with the latter option and hope for the best the not TOO terrible.

Which, you’re painfully aware, is probably not the wisest course of action….


How are your Hebrew typing skills?


Disclaimer: Any resemblance between the above post and an actual regular feature of life here in TRLEOOB (=the real life equivalent of our blog) may or may not be purely coincidental.


  1. I've been trying to program my fingers to touchtype in Hebrew, too. I learned it in the 7th grade in English.
    Most Israelis have awful grammar and spelling and don't bother with the right gender. A good trick is to spellcheck the Hebrew on word, since there's grammar check, too and translation help.

  2. Batya - That's a good tip! I usually use Babylon to check if a word is זכר or נקבה.


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