Archive for Crash blossoms

Major who?

From Andrea Comiskey, a crash blossom on the National Weather Service’s site: “Major to record flooding continues over portions of Mississippi River Valley”.

Read the rest of this entry »

Comments (12)

Minister Morneau hiked down … what?

Faith Jones writes:

I live in Canada, where even our Prime Minister goes canoeing and snowshoeing and stuff, so when I saw this headline on the CBC:

… I assumed the Finance Minister was hiking down an actual mountain somewhere in or around Ottawa. Then I got to “payment” and, because of my previous confusion, I still had it in my mind that the verb was “hikes down” but now I thought it was meant metaphorically, and tried to figure out what these “payment rules” were and what “hiking down” such a rule would entail.

Yeah. Minister Morneau has increased the minimum DOWN PAYMENT needed on houses over $500,000. Took me a good minute and a half to get there.

Comments (7)

Dog economy

Sue-lin Wong, “China Nov inflation edges up, but deflation risks dog economy“, Reuters 12/9/2015. When I saw that headline, I wondered whether dog economy was a Chinese idiom for “recession”. Or could the story really be about the economic sector dealing with dogs?

Of course what’s really going on is that risks is a plural noun and dog is a verb, meaning “to bother or pester persistently”.

But there really is a dog economy, even if Chinese deflation isn’t risking it: Teresa Bradley and Ritchie King, “The Dog Economy Is Global—but What Is the World’s True Canine Capital?“, The Atlantic 11/13/2015.

Read the rest of this entry »

Comments (11)

Cloud Conversations

David Donnell writes:

My initial thought was that there was a climate-related “cloud conversation” that the French were oppposing — Michele Kelemen, “Paris Attacks Cloud Conversation At Summit Of World Powers“, NPR 11/15/2015.

 

Comments (3)

Trump fights to break what?

Comments (12)

Why the sudden need?

And what sort of factory? That’s what Stephen B. wondered when he read the Guardian headline, “German factory orders slide unexpectedly”.

Comments (27)

So WHAT rolls to the UK again?

[h/t Ian Preston]

Comments (39)

Baby tracks down a nurse

Several people sent me links to this headline. One submitter wrote “I’ve enjoyed many ambiguous headlines in my few years of following Language Log. Today I ran across this one, which I read entirely wrong at first (how does a baby track down a nurse?):”

Woman burned as a baby tracks down nurse who cared for her“, Chicago Tribune 9/30/2015.

Read the rest of this entry »

Comments (20)

A really big sinkhole

J.C. send a link to Justin Hyde, “Chevy Unveils The Restored 1 Millionth Corvette Pulled From A Kentucky Sinkhole“, Yahoo! Autos 9/3/2015, with the comment “This must be some big ass sinkhole”.

Read the rest of this entry »

Comments (10)

Trump insults his rattle rivals

FML writes that a headline in this morning’s WSJ print edition “totally garden-pathed me”:

Read the rest of this entry »

Comments (17)

Trailing modifiers can be dangerous

Lamiat Sabin, “Man rattled by python found coiled up and hiding in his box of cornflakes“, The Independent 3/9/2015.

A man claims to have had a real-life kitchen nightmare after he saw a long coiled-up snake poke its head out of his box of cereal.

Jarred Smith, 22, was making lunch on Tuesday when he spotted the two-metre diamond python hiding inside the open cornflakes package – according to the Daily Telegraph in Australia.

Yuxi Liu writes:

I thought it meant a man was so rattled by python that he coiled up in his box of cornflakes.
I hope this can provide some laughs on Language Log.

Read the rest of this entry »

Comments (30)

Take off that broccoli!

From Stephen Dodson:

It took me a minute to parse this headline correctly: 
Bill Pennington, “‘Like Putting on Broccoli,’ or Cauliflower, and Results Are Bumpy“, NYT 6/20/2015.

 

Comments (14)

Secret Dracula Star

Comments (14)