Sunday, June 17, 2007

Sunday morning hed roundup

The bad, the bad and the ugly from this morning's romp through the news:

A time to adore Ruth
Nearly festive service honors her devotion to family, Christ

OK. We're familiar with the source paper's fetishistic attitude toward the Graham family (used to be the only thing that would get a staffer overseas was a Billy Graham crusade). But did anybody think to look "adore" up before slapping it into the hed? Gosh, let's:
1. To worship as a deity, to pay divine honours to. (Now almost confined to poetry.)
2. (In the usage of R.C. Ch.) To reverence with relative or representative honours.
3. absol. and intr. To offer worship.
4. techn. To kiss the hand, to a sovereign, etc. (So explained by Selden, but perh. never so used.) Obs. Also, To elect (a pope) by adoration.
5. fig. To reverence or honour very highly; to regard with the utmost respect and affection. Now (also in trivial use), to like very much.

The second and third parts of 5 might work, but they seem pretty much like ongoing states -- not the sorts of thing brought on by the occasion of the funeral. Recommendation: Turn down the wailing and gnashing of teeth a couple notches. It's cloying and irritating, and you can be as respectful as you need without it.

Signs point to tossing more illegal ones
Crews sweep streets to find violators as city considers upping fines

Somebody got just a bit too clever -- or a bit too smitten with Elongated Yellow Fruit Syndrome. The trouble here is that I have no idea what "ones" means: Is it like "cold ones"? Is it like "illegal aliens"? There's no help from either of the decks, or from the lede:

Peter Harden has made it his mission to clean up a corner of Providence Road in southeast Charlotte. Every Friday night, he says, is out of control as new signs pop up for the weekend.

What is he trying to clean up -- is it something the signs are advertising? Escort services? Weekend parties? If you can hang in there until the third graf, it comes into focus at last:

Twenty pairs of city employees and volunteers fanned out across the city to clean up illegal signs.

Ah. It's the signs themselves. Dear deskers, if you want to be subtle, try to be a bit more blunt about it. I'm coming to these in the grim, coffee-deprived hours of the morning. As do many people who read heds, whether online or in print. (Did we check the math, by the way? Each of these pairs was collecting more than 80 signs an hour?)

Cops nab 3 after tortured boy, missing girl and mom's body found at Wisconsin house
Sometimes the sheer Foxness of it all simply overwhelms one, doesn't it?


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