November 22nd, 2006

Typewriter Guy

(no subject)

Dear Strunk & Web,

I need your help in confirming or denying the validity of the newspaper headline on today's Metro paper. Now I'm sure you're just as surprised as I am that "The World's Largest Newspaper -- In The World!" may have encountered a wee bit of grammatical trouble in its headline-writing today, but their obstensibly haphazard and slapdash use of a single comma is leaving me a bit cold.

The headline (and comma) in question is attached to an article about a group of BU Republicans who are creating a whites-only scholarship in an attempt, they say, to "convey the absurdity of any race-based scholarship." (For your reference, here's the Boston Glob article.)

Now the discussion of the actual issue is best saved for someone else's journal or blog or subway walls (and tenement halls) as I am only interested in pointing out trivial absurdities in our city's fine daily periodicals. So I will let you know that The Metro, then, ran this as their big bad front page headline this morning:
Scholarship, For Whites Only
At first glance that looks like the world's most superfluous comma. What do you think? The only way I could even remotely justify such a comma is if I were to suggest that the comma represents an inherent "but" qualifier, only maybe the newspaper just didn't have enough space what with its large easy-to-read headline font.


It's just bad writin', that's all it is.

Isn't it?

Your pal,
Alanis Morrissette
Tom Lehrer is Smug

Mrs. Peel, we're needed.

We have a mission to infiltrate the American borough of Manhattan, and possibly some other boroughs nearby, to do as much cool stuff as our stamina and finances can allow. Shortlisted targets include St. Mark's Place, junk buying, restaurant noshing, late-night stuff-doing, tree-hiding-behind, museum-perusing, theater-sitting (will coordinate access via special representative on West 46th Street) and possible rendezvous with Secret Agent Wombat at the entrance to our secret base underneath the ruins of the 1964 World's Fair. I am reasonably sure that whatever our targets end up to be, however, we shall accomplish our mission with style and, uh, more style.

Transportation and accommodations have been arranged. Our deployment is imminent; just a few weeks away.

And might I add, Mrs. Peel, that I am completely psyched for this mission.