A Tale of Two Fs (2016)

Some time ago I was waiting at the bus stop on the corner of Musgrave Road and Upper Clifton Terrace, Red Hill, when I noticed that ‘Clifton’ was spelt with two fs on the bus-stop marker, but (correctly) with one f on the nearby street sign.

I couldn’t let that glaring inconsistency stand. Nor was it fair that the bus stop had twice its fair share of fs while some other bus stop might well be missing out entirely—and I don’t imagine that the Brisbane City Council has an endless supply of fs to throw around.

I immediately phoned the Council and asked them if they could see their way clear to removing one of the fs—it was entirely up to them which one—from bus stop 5a in Red Hill, and perhaps reassigning it to a more deserving bus stop elsewhere in Brisbane.

They said they’d forward my request to Translink, Brisbane’s public transport provider. I suspected that this might be their polite way of telling me to ‘f’ off, and that I’d end up having to go back to the bus stop myself with a bottle of Liquid Paper.

Ah, but I was wrong. The next time I passed the stop, the second f was gone. It’s no exaggeration to say that the sight of that amendment restored my faith in humanity (and Translink).

At the same time, I was a bit disappointed that my intervention hadn’t been publicly acknowledged. I didn’t expect grand gestures: a simple inscription somewhere on the bus stop would have sufficed—something along the lines of The Brisbane City Council, in association with Translink and other key stakeholders, extends its heartfelt gratitude to David Cohen, etc.

But like most true heroes, I remain anonymous. Never mind: correct spelling is its own reward—although, as rewards go, I prefer cash.

3 thoughts on “A Tale of Two Fs (2016)”

  1. Just reading your book “The Hunter” – I would put the book name in italics if I could work out if, or how my Andydroid does this! I’m half way through your book thoroughly enjoying it, plus getting some good laughs on the way. Keep up the publishing (especially the short stories) please. I’ll search out your other two books shortly. I’ll buy them. I found this one in a book exchange. If anyone asks me “do you know the writer David Cohen”? I can now say yes.


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