Several years ago, I went through a communications training at work. One of the exercises was to sit back-to-back with your partner. One person would look at a simple picture and give instructions to the other person on how to draw it without saying what any of the objects were in the picture. For example, I would say, "Draw a circle with lines coming out all around it in the upper left corner of the paper," to indicate my partner should draw the sun in the upper left corner. Except for a few cases, the exercise illustrated that we need to be much more clear in our communication to ensure that others know what we are really trying to ask them to do.
It did not surprise me, therefore, when I asked Lee to cut out the "e" and "i" the other day, and I turned around to find him very carefully cutting out each letter.
I had meant for him to cut the paper in half. It would have been helpful if I had said that.