Wednesday, April 30, 2008


I saw this AOL News headline:

Bush Blaming Congress On The Foreclosure Crisis?

A quick scan of the headline had me doing a double-take.  Then I had to read it a few more times.  Is it just me, or does the wording in that headline mean that "the foreclosure crisis" is responsible for Congress.  I'm pretty sure the headline writer meant it the other way 'round.

Shouldn't it have read "Bush Blaming Foreclosure Crisis On Congress?"  or "Bush Blaming Congress For Foreclosure Crisis?"

Could one of the many, many definitions for the word "on" actually support the headline being written that way?  If so, I just can't wrap my mind around it.  But if you can wrap yours around it, then please email me and explain it, because things like this just drive me nuts!

I know.  It's just a headline. 

But it's a stupidly written headline!!

Thursday, April 3, 2008

Cut short

One of my pet hates is the use of abbreviations without using an explanation. There are some fairly common ones about, such as e.g. (for instance, for example). However, if you can get away without using the abbreviation, please do. I worked in the supplies division of the army for 6 years, and they are terrible for abbreviations and strange shortcuts. CSM e.g. means company sergeant major, the terror of all troops. I found guidelines for the use of abbreviations in the U.S..

Allied to that is textspeak, or should I type txtspk. When I first came to AOL, now 4 years ago, I didn't have a clue what somebody meant when they typed CUL8R. Of course, I now know it stands for "see you later". And I also appreciate that not every internet user is a 70 wpm fast typist like myself (coughs). Moreover, you can't type fast on a mobile phone keypad, and I see the need for shortcuts. However, textspeak is beginning to intrude into everyday language, and it's a degradation in my book. It's the answer to a lazy man's prayer.