Thursday, September 28, 2006

Just buy him a map, somebody

Matthews -- I was speaking to the Kiwanis Club of Matthews last week about the birth of Neighbors of Southern Mecklenburg when the question came out of left field:

Do I think a newspaper section like ours contributes to the Balkanization of the community? Yes, they used a word more often heard at the U.N. than the Township Grille at lunch.

In focusing solely on one side of town, are we fragmenting the broader Mecklenburg area in a way that leads people to care only about themselves and their side of the street?

This wasn't the first time in the Neighbors' brief existence that the concern was raised, though it was the first time someone brought it up to me by using a geopolitical term sometimes applied to the breakup of the former Soviet Union.

Well, sometimes. But that seems the less likely choice, considering that it's a reference to countries and events on the, um, Balkan Peninsula and dates to early in the previous century. With about five minutes in a decent database (HEADSUP-L is all about economy of force, and five minutes is generous), the writer could also have discovered that "Balkanization" has been used in connection with urban-suburban issues for easily a couple of decades.

Alas, questions of that sort don't go over well when raised by the copydesk. They tend to be greeted by disdainful grumbling about the Writer's Voice, the copyeds' lack of imagination, and stuff like that. And the blunders go in the paper for people to make fun of.

[this post has now been edited to prevent the spread of boneheadedness, which was the fault of the original poster. where is the slot when you need one?]


Anonymous Anonymous said...

I thought the verb was "were" because the subjects were plural: "one parent AND child." Would it still be was?

12:30 PM, September 29, 2006  
Blogger fev said...

Nope. You're right. Those responsible for the original post have been fed to trolls. Sorry.

1:02 PM, September 29, 2006  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

No problem. BTW, enjoy your blog very much, Nicole Bogdas pointed me here, and I've been sharing it with all my co-workers. Greetings from the bikers in Daytona Beach. :-)

1:08 PM, October 02, 2006  

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