cactuswatcher: (Default)
( May. 17th, 2017 10:07 am)
From Trump: No politician in history treated worse than me
As my brother used to say, it's the littlest violin in the world playing 'My Heart Cries For You.'
I'm tempted to rewrite the headline without the word 'treated,' but that's not true. But surely Trump understands both his position and public relations as poorly as any elected US politician in recent memory.

From (our local NBC station's site.) John McCain says Trump scandals are 'Watergate size'
It was also on the NBC national site this morning, before it was subsumed into the following article: The ground begins to shift for Capitol Hill Republicans
Amazing it was stable this long.
cactuswatcher: (Default)
( Mar. 9th, 2017 07:57 pm)
Florida Lawyer's Pants Catch Fire During Florida Arson Trial

Liar, liar, pants on fire! Yes, his client was convicted.

German inmates dine on McDonald's

Failed food supply contract negotiation. A choice for lunch of regular hamburger, regular cheeseburger or veggie burger. Inhumane treatment! They can't even have the new bigger Big Mac! I wonder how many hardened criminals order the veggie burger. No word about fries. No word about dinner. Bockwurst, pretzels and beer from the nearest bar?
cactuswatcher: (Default)
( May. 18th, 2016 09:29 am)
I'm currently reading The Fall of the Dynasties: The Collapse of the Old Order 1905-1922 by Edmond Taylor. It's an old book now written closer to the Great War than to 2016. It is a little outdated being from before the Vietnam War and at times relying on a visceral understanding of the Cold War of the early 1960s to make the situation before World War I clear. Old codgers like me are more likely to understand that than even folks born in the 1960s who grew up when the tensions were a lot less, though we still called it the Cold War. Anyone who vaguely studied World War I in school should know the rough story: A bunch of ancient monarchies collapsed as the war was coming to its close. This book is a fairly decent next step into looking into what actually happened. It shows how those in power who were well aware that the Old Order was seriously in danger in the early 20th century, made things worse by trying to save the old ways.

There are a few oddities about the book. In particular near the beginning Taylor uses a bit of vocabulary rarely seen outside of a university-aptitude vocabulary test. Some of the political terms he used must have been fine for the World War I era but I would guess were less than clear by the early 1960s. Being a fairly broad history Taylor mentions many symptoms of crumbling societies, but doesn't do a lot of theorizing about how the state of affairs got to that point. It's something I think we would expect more of from a book written these days.

Still on reading, headline: Dan Brown working on young adult version of 'Da Vinci Code' via AP.

This set me back a bit. Why does Brown think he needs a special version for young adults? Pre-teens maybe, but young adults? What's he going to do, turn it into a manga? That would be interesting. Is he just going to dumb it down? Is he going to condense it by removing most of the romance-novel-worthy drooling over his chosen locations? That would have been an admirable goal for his original version. Or is he going to go into more excruciating detail in explaining to those poor dumb adults why those places are oh-so important. Maybe he's going to put vampires in it. The last time I passed by the young adult display in B&N there were still lots and lots of books with vampires. Whatever, I'm sure religious conservative parents who secretly read the original themselves will be just thrilled to have their high-school kids exposed to all that *blasphemy* in a convenient and easily readable form. ;o)
cactuswatcher: (Default)
( May. 16th, 2016 06:51 am)
US Navy Poised to Take Ownership of Its Largest Warship abcnews

Being an editor and writing headlines is an important responsibility even in this era of the Internet when the headlines don't have to both fit and fill a specific spot on a newspaper. Editors should have experience and a broad knowledge of a lot of subjects. Most of all they should read the article for which they are writing a headline and not make assumptions that are not appropriate. The person who wrote this headline doesn't know squat about the Navy and its ships, and didn't take a second to check whether what they were intending to write made sense. The article clearly states the ship is the largest *destroyer*. The leap from that to the largest warship is both dramatic and inappropriate. As big as it is, the new destroyer Zumwalt is dwarfed by every aircraft carrier in the fleet!

Changing the subject: Take a look at the second paragraph of the article and see who the captain of the Zumwalt is!
cactuswatcher: (Default)
( May. 6th, 2016 06:14 am)
KFC launches edible nail polish
Don't tell me: It tastes like chicken... A great idea for 13-year-old girls who chew their fingernails!

Venezuela Faces Beer Shortage as Country's Largest Brewery Shutters Its doors http://abcnews.go
If that were only the worst of their problems.

Drivers unknowingly filled up with diesel instead of regular at Valley QT
A fuel truck driver dumped a whole load of diesel fuel in the wrong tank at a filling station. Glad it wasn't my gas station! It reminds me of an incident back in Missouri where I lived near the airport. A classic World War II era DC-3 flew into Lambert Field and refueled to travel onward. Unfortunately the kid who did the refueling didn't know the difference between aviation gasoline and jet fuel (basically diesel fuel). The plane crashed shortly after takeoff. The pilot/owner survived but was a lot lighter in the wallet, obviously.
cactuswatcher: (Default)
( May. 1st, 2016 08:53 am)
Rainfall Totals: Satruday, April 30, 2016

Glad I'm not the only one with trouble self-editing. Notice the address of the article had the same mistake.
cactuswatcher: (Default)
( Apr. 29th, 2016 10:51 am)
Satellite That Hunts for Black Holes in Space is Lost

Nothing wrong with the headline using "is lost" for "was destroyed," especially when they can't track the pieces. But it does seem ironic that something that was supposed to look for something can't be found. Oh well, what's a few hundred million dollars down the drain?

'Lucifer in the Flesh': Does Ted Cruz Have a Popularity Problem?:

That's a rhetorical question, right?

Is social media making people depressed?

A better question is the same thing without the second word.
cactuswatcher: (Default)
( Apr. 9th, 2016 07:38 am)
I get endless (probably too much) amusement from reading and misreading headlines. One of the joys of the Internet is that there are so many more places to find things it's easy to find slip ups or things to poke harmless fun at.

Non Sequitur: from, Man who scaled cliff to propose arrested for drugs
Huh? Turns out the guy wanted to do something memorable while calling his girl on a cell phone to ask her to marry him. As he was climbing down, he got stuck on the cliff face and had to be rescued, at which point the rescuers noticed he was acting even goofier than the usual guy who'd just proposed. No word on whether she said yes.

Magic Misread, dangling modfier division: from, Veteran run over by SUV trying to break up fight
Which goes to show commas are useful or breaking up fights with SUVs is a poor idea. (The veteran survived.)

The wonders of science: from, Scientists discover rare planet that has three stars
Which could imply there is something rare about the planet other than the fact they haven't discovered many three-star systems with planets yet.


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