October 30, 2007


This Just In...

Something you may, or may not know, is that journalists don't pick their own headlines. Oh, they can pretend they do, by sending in a piece with a big, bolded sentence on top that they are hoping will David Copperfield-like mesmerize their editor into using. But not usually. And so you open your piece and see what someone has prepared to go along with your meaty discourse. Sometimes they're brilliant; sometimes you thing someone is just messing with your head. Sometimes you are certain they just leaned back in their chair at midnight and yell into the newsroom "quick! what's the first word that comes into your head when I say 'toilet'?", and go with that.

I'm just going to play headlines today. I won't pretend to link long, long articles (though I will put it in for those playing along at home), and you don't have to pretend to read them. "Washington Spends $43.5 billion on Intelligence" says the G&M. Hmm. And that was probably just in the Oval Office, and they came up empty handed.

"Dog Shoots Man", the Guardian tells me, while reporting on a story from Iowa. Well, I guess if you're going to stake your freedom on your right to bear arms, the dog's gonna want to get in on it too.

"Sick Yobs Daub Pen on Precious" sez the British Sun. I will translate: the 'yobs' are brats, daubing is drawing grafitti, and well, click on the link for a boo at Precious. Beauty is in the eye and all that...

I kind of think of CBS News as above the fray when it comes to goofy headlines. I am mistaken. "Peppers Prevent Patients' Post-Op Pain?" is a small nod that sometimes editors just want to go home and have a beer. And sometimes they have a beer before they go home.

And this is just a stand-alone headline from Slate, no story required. Click here.

Play along if you like, if only to get away from the watch fob debate taking place under the hard drive entry. Arlene and Jeff, back to your corners...

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