Friday, July 16, 2010

Murder by ... wait, what?

Should we count this as a variant crash blossom, or is it just a dangler in disguise?

You can, of course, be forgiven for thinking you knew exactly what "murder by" means:

You'll likely never look at office supplies the same way again after director Fouad Mikati's gory close-ups of murder by staple remover, scissors, bookend and paper cutter. (LAT, July 16)

In 2008 Andrei Lugovoi—wanted in Britain for the murder by poison of defector Alexander Litvinenko—was elected to the Duma on the LDPR party list. (Newsday, July 15)

The phone conversations between Sam Fleishman and myself continue around themes in my forthcoming Murder By Computer. (HuffPo, July 12)

The District Attorney's Office added special circumstances to the murder charges, including murder by lying in wait and murder committed in the commission of a burglary. (Visalia Times-Delta, July 9)

The story, alas, is less interesting than the hed:
Together, they stabbed and bludgeoned a 41-year-old tattoo shop owner to death with a sledgehammer — and hatched some of their plans in typo- and expletive-laden text messages, Florida detectives said.

And you can see why this one raced to the top of the news agenda.

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