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#132127 - 08/26/04 02:37 PM Headlines
Saranita Offline

Registered: 09/18/00
Posts: 48
Loc: Central Ohio
I'm relatively new, so please forgive if I'm treading worn word paths, but have you recently discussed odd news headlines? This week, on local television news, the anchor reported on a fire by saying, "A house burns to the ground in a Worthington suburb, and it's not the first time."

An accursed house.

#132128 - 08/26/04 02:50 PM Re: Headlines
AnnaStrophic Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 03/15/00
Posts: 6511
Loc: lower upstate New York
Ha! Yeah, we do headlines from time to time. This is a goody. Welcome, it's good to see you here, old friend .

#132129 - 08/27/04 07:33 AM Re: Headlines
clockworkchaos Offline

Registered: 07/13/04
Posts: 72
Loc: "The South", USA
Welcome, Sarantia!

Last week I saw on a Checkers (fast food) sign what was probably supposed to be "CLOSERS WANTED" but the C fell off so it said "LOSERS WANTED."

#132130 - 08/27/04 02:51 PM Re: Headlines
wofahulicodoc Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 08/06/01
Posts: 6927
Loc: Worcester, MA
Does that mean Checkers wants people to refill the water glasses? A closer is a kind of relief pitcher, don'tcha know...

#132131 - 08/27/04 08:42 PM Re: Headlines
Zed Offline

Registered: 08/27/02
Posts: 2154
Loc: British Columbia, Canada
Hi Saranita
It's not a headline but a church near me used to have a sign with the phrase "All Visitors Welcome" above the title of the sermon. Unfortunately one week it read:
"Welcome All Visitors

#132132 - 08/28/04 07:22 AM Re: Headlines
Buffalo Shrdlu Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 06/24/02
Posts: 7210
Loc: Vermont
here's what the Guardian has to say about headlines:
Use active verbs where possible, particularly in news headlines: "Editors publish new style guidelines" is much better than "New style guidelines published". Avoid tabloidese such as bid, brand, dub, and slam, and broadsheet cliches such as insist, signal, and target.

Take care over ambuiguity: "Landmine claims dog UK arms firm", which appeared in the paper, contains three words that can be a noun and a verb; as a result, you have to read the headline several times to work out what it means.

Also to be avoided are quotation marks, unless essential to signify a quote or for legal reasons. And resist the temptation to replace "and" with a comma: "Blair and Brown agree euro deal" not "Blair, Brown agree euro deal".

Be careful when making references to popular culture: "Mrs Culpepper's lonely hearts club banned" works, because most people are familiar with Sgt Pepper's, but allusions to your favourite obscure 70s prog-rock album are likely to pass over most readers' heads. Long after everyone had forgotten the 60s movie Charlie Bubbles, tabloid sports subeditors continued to mystify readers by using the headline "Charlie bubbles" whenever Charlie Nicholas (or any other Charlie) scored a goal.

Puns are fine - "Where there's muck there's bras", about a farmer's wife who started a lingerie business, was voted 2003 headline of the year by our staff - but do not overuse, or resort to tired puns such as "flushed with success" (this story has got a plumber in it!). In the 70s, the Guardian suffered from a reputation for excruciating puns; today, we want to be known for clever, original and witty headlines

formerly known as etaoin...

#132133 - 08/28/04 04:35 PM Re: Headlines
Rapunzel Offline

Registered: 01/18/01
Posts: 328
Loc: Eastern Pennsylvania
Puns are fine - "Where there's muck there's bras", about a farmer's wife who started a lingerie business, was voted 2003 headline of the year by our staff

I've been staring at this headline for several minutes, but I can't seem to figure out the pun. Am I missing something obvious, or is it a British-ism?

#132134 - 08/28/04 05:40 PM Re: Headlines
Faldage Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 12/01/00
Posts: 13803
Around here, Rap, if you can't figure out a pun, my advice would be: don't try too hard; just count yourself lucky.

#132135 - 08/28/04 07:46 PM Re: Headlines
grapho Offline

Registered: 11/09/03
Posts: 619
Loc: Carpal Tunnel Country
re "I can't seem to figure out the pun ... is it a British-ism"?

Yes, it is a British-ism.

There is an old North of England saying:

Where there's muck there's brass

Don't know what "brass" means, but the saying must be well known if a twist on it became the Guardian's most admired pun in 2003.

From this Guardian story, introduced by the headline "Where there's muck there's brass", I take it that "brass" is "money" or "cash".


Yep, that's it: "money".

This from:

A dictionary of slang - "B" - Slang and colloquialisms of the UK.
...brass Noun. 1. Money. 2. Prostitute.

The "prostitute" undertone makes the "bras" substitution all the more clever.

#132136 - 08/28/04 09:58 PM Re: Headlines
of troy Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 10/17/00
Posts: 5400
Loc: rego park
re: {blue]There is an old North of England saying:

Where there's muck there's brass

just as Dicken's in (oops i forget? ws it Our Mutual Friend) has characters looking for riches in dust heaps. (which i totally mis understood first time i tried to read the book (which ever one it is)
we have garbage men, not dustmen, and dumps and landfills, not dust heaps..

but certainly the poor of london thought there were riches in the dustheaps.

(i guess i have read enough of the 'all creatures great and small' series to know most old north sayings.. and brass for money is second nature to me now.)

my other obsession

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