Archive for Crash blossoms
Jonathan Amos, "Scientists count whales from space", BBC News 2/12/2014.
It's amazing how sensitive the measurement and modeling of gravitational perturbations of exoplanet systems has become, but detecting the effects of whales is a whole new level. Anyhow, apparently, whales are Out There…
"EU rules ‘mean children can't get life-saving cancer drugs’", Euractive 2/11/2014. Death panels in the Nanny State? As Ali G said to Sir Rhodes Boyson, "Wikkid, man." Read the rest of this entry »
Read the rest of this entry »
Well, almost: Mark Kinver, "Citizen science charts horse chestnut tree pest spread", BBC News 1/24/2014. Though charts might have been a plural noun, it's clearly a verb in this case, alas. The headline writer missed the chance for a genuine 8-element noun pile, e.g. "Citizen science horse chestnut tree pest spread tally".
Still, British headline interpretation continues to be good practice for reading classical Chinese poetry.
Katia Dmitrieva, "Madonna addicted to sweat dance plugs Toronto condos: Mortgages", Bloomberg News 1/10/2014 — Reader CD, a hardened journalistic veteran, calls this "a rare American noun pile headline":
It’s a spectacular garden path which turns out to be a noun pile. I’m pretty good at parsing headlinese but I had no idea what the story was supposed to be about, or even what the syntax was supposed to be, until I clicked through. I suppose it would have helped if I’d known the name of the song beforehand. I’m quite impressed by the flimsiness of the connection between the lead and the content of the story too, but that’s another matter.
On the nationality question, it’s a Canadian story and possibly a Canadian writer, but Bloomberg has a very strict style guide for headlines regardless of jurisdiction, so I’m comfortable calling it American.
Allen G. Breed, "Corn maze cutter stalks fall fun across country", AP 9/5/2013:
Noun pile? Crash Blossom? We report, you decide… Rollin Bishop, "Quest for Giant Bomb E3 Set Porn Bears Fruit", 6/24/2013:
The Electronic Entertainment Expo — E3 for short — is held in Los Angeles every year, typically in June, and it means that a lot of journalists descend upon the area in short order. This year was no different, and popular gaming site Giant Bomb rented a “professional studio” for some of their coverage. Things got weird, though, and it quickly became apparent that what they were renting was actually the set for a bunch of pornography. Yeah.
I was a couple of sentences into the story by Ker Than ("More Midwest Twisters: Why Is Oklahoma Tornado Vexed?", National Geographic 6/1/2013) before I figured it out:
Here are two entertainment news headlines that are difficult to parse without knowing in advance what they're reporting on. First up, from TIME, a headline on a May 31 piece by TV critic James Poniewozik:
Second, from Cinema Blend, a headline on a post earlier today by Mack Rawden:
I love reading Montana newspapers. Today's Missoulian has an article entitled "Helena man reassembles five $100 bills eaten by dog". (The article notes that the dog ignored a $1 bill; apparently it didn't taste so good.) The man reassembled the bills after picking the pieces out of subsequent piles of dog poop. Local banks refused to accept the washed, reassembled, and taped-together bills, and eventually he was told to submit them to the government, where, according to (for instance) the website of the Bureau of Engraving, US Department of the Treasury, each case of damaged currency "is carefully examined by an experienced mutilated currency examiner". I infer that non-mutilated people don't get any experience as currency examiners.
Y.M. sent in a link to a story with the headline "Jury awards $6.5M in CA case of nozzle thought gun", remarking that
This is the first I ever heard of nozzle thought guns. Needless to say, I am worried.
Commenting on a link to Conor Pope, "New poll shows Labour support nose-diving", Irish Times 3/30/2013, B.H. remarks that "If I knew what it was, I might do it for them …"
Giacomo Sillari sent in this snapshot of a news-stand display: