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A Man, A Plan And A Sharpie: 'The Great Typo Hunt'

Incensed by a "no tresspassing" sign, Jeff Deck launched a cross-country trip to right grammatical wrongs.

He enlisted a friend, Benjamin D. Herson, and together they got to work erasing errant quotation marks, rectifying misspellings and cutting unnecessary possessive apostrophes.

The Great Typo Hunt is the story of their crusade.

In 2 1/2 months, Herson and Deck traveled the perimeter of the country, exploring towns and cities in search of typos. They found 437 typos and were able to correct more than half of them.

Some typos were uncorrectable -- out of the team's reach, or, as Deck tells NPR's Tony Cox, requiring tools and materials that weren't included in his "typo correction kit."

Deck carried a variety of Sharpies, of which "the black Sharpie was the most important." Deck also carried Wite-Out, dry erase markers, chalk, crayons and pens.

Sometimes Deck and Herson couldn't get permission from the typo-maker to make an adjustment to the signage. "They would turn us down, or they'd be apathetic about it," says Deck.

"Or they'd say 'Oh, we'll fix that one later,' and we'd really have to take their word on that."

Though people predicted Deck would find more typos in some regions of the country than others, in fact, "everyone really does make mistakes," he says. "We would find them wherever we went."

They did find, however, that local businesses tended to need more typo help. Corporate chain stores and signage usually didn't need as much editing.

Tell us: What's the typo that drives you crazy? Do you ever do anything about it?

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