An initial 4A?
laurence.horn at YALE.EDU
Fri Jun 28 21:51:37 UTC 2002
Thanks, Jim. That's another great area to look at. And I should
have remembered about the "Gunfight" as opposed to "Roundup"...
>In a message dated 6/28/02 12:24:30 PM Eastern Daylight Time,
>laurence.horn at YALE.EDU writes:
> > In reading Allen Walker Read's wonderful round-up on the OK corral
>That was "gunfight at the OK corral", which considering the polemics I have
>occasionallly seen on the subject, also seems to fit.
even if the last time I went through this somewhere I checked google
and found that several other people had the same misinformed
recollection. Almost qualifies as a genuine folk movie title. As
for the telegraphese, I knew about the reduction in number of words
(to save money) but not in their size (to save time).
>One other source of "telegraphese" is newspaper headlines. The headline
>writer (generally the copy editor who handles the story) has a limited amount
>of space in which s/he has to fill with large type and still produce an
>accurate precis of the story. Many collections exist of unintentionally
>humorous headlines, e.g. "DRUNK GETS TWO WEEKS IN VIOLIN CASE". Or the
>Washington Post on the day Soviet Premier Andropov's death was announced,
>"REAGAN TO VISIT MOSCOW ANDROPOV DEAD"
One locus classicus for telegraphese is the (purported? apocryphal?)
exchange between Cary Grant, on location somewhere in Europe, and a
flack of some sort:
Flack: HOW OLD CARY GRANT
CG: OLD CARY GRANT FINE HOW YOU
There have been some excellent collections of ambiguous headlines, as
you say. My favorite is "Squad Helps Dog Bite Victim, and other
flubs from the nation's press", released by Dolphin Books in 1980.
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