Saturday, August 26, 2006

Oh, the things that slip by editors these days

Updated: Aug. 25, 2006, 2:21 PM ET

Wang doesn't need mound to loom large at home
Associated Press
ESPN printed this stunner from AP on Friday. Chien-Ming Wang, a New York Yankees pitcher from Taiwan, was highlighted in this article. Apparently local broadcasts in Taiwan were all tuned to watch Wang. I just find it hard to believe this headline made it by the editors.
Because I love puns, I frequently use them in my articles, although my editors are a bit more ruthless about them. Then there's zuegmas, words that modify two or more words, such as "the wind howled and the dogs did, too." I like those, too.
But one of my brothers, in our writerly family, takes the cake for his journalist coup of headlines. He was a writer for the Flagstaff paper when he was in J-school at the University of Northern Arizona. He was asked to take over the society column for a day, much to his chagrin. The highlight of the day's events was the marriage of a woman from the little Arizona town of Eager, who was marrying a Flagstaff man.
My brother wrote "Flagstaff man takes Eager bride." Needless to say, the father of the bride was not amused (he was quite influential and a big advertiser in the paper, as I recall). My brother's editor, who didn't catch that headline either, probably heard quite a bit about it from his boss and they printed another story the next day sans his hilarious headline. The best part, he said, was that they never asked him to do the society column again.
As I get ready to apply for graduate school to work on my degree in Sociology, I wish I had the drive to take the GREs and try to get into Mizzou at Columbia to study journalism. I'm just too lazy, however, so I'm going to take the MATs, which are much easier and which is all that's required at the college I plan to attend. So until tomorrow, be sure to read those headlines closely. You never know what you'll find.

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