Jon and I were proof reading 36 individual election manifestos. It's a painful process.
We have developed a system for this. We each read half of them, then pass our corrected galleys to the other, so we can cross check each others corrections. This normally happens in an atmosphere of silence - two colleagues working away, respectful of each other's space and need to concentrate.
Suddenly, from the silence, Jon spoke.
"What's a paedo meter?"
AK: I thought I had misheard. "Sorry, Jon - what's a what...?"
JB: "A paedo meter? What's a paedo meter...?"
My blood ran cold. Which candidate could write such a thing? In what context was it written?
AK: "Jon, say it again, slowly..."
JB: "A paedo meter".
AK: "Oh God. Jon, can you read me the whole sentence. In what exact context has it been used..?"
JB: "My trusty paedo meter testifies that every week I must walk 100 miles around the ward, meeting residents and delivering my regular newsletters."
A wave of relief washed over me.
"Pedometer, Jon! P - E - D- O - M - E - T - E - R.