- Nazi mixup
- July 29th, 2010
On Monday, while scouring The Ohio Book Store for a choice read, I found "Wermacht," a visual history of the German army during World War II. Knowing my co-worker Tyrel was a WWII buff and collector, I scanned the price, determined it was a good buy and delivered it to his desk the next day.
He looked perplexed by my gift, but Tyrel was talking with his editor, and I was on my way to a meeting, so we didn't discuss.
While in the meeting, I discovered my headline on Tyrel's story from two days before (published on my one day off while Tyrel was in the building and I was out of town) upset a few readers. They had been calling and complaining to him, because readers understandably confuse the story author and headline writer.
The story was about inmates working for the county (washing cars, cleaning) to possibly reduce their sentences. My headline: "Work will set you free."
If you haven't smacked your forehead yet, know that "Work will set you free" in German is "Arbeit macht frei," the words infamously posted at the Auschwitz concentration camp. I imagine the book must have seemed like cyanide icing on the cake.
Nice one, KZ.