or, stuff that I dragged out of my head

Location: Moncton, New Brunswick, Canada

Thursday, April 16, 2009


Salon's sports columnist, King Kaufman, seems to be giving up his sports-column-writing duties because "Salon asked me in the wake of the financial crash to switch gears and take on some editing duties while continuing to write the column whenever I could. I said I'd try that, though I didn't think I'd like the column-writing part of it."

Wait. Salon has editors? People who look at copy and fix it before it reaches readers' screens?

Then how do you explain this?

Over at Burger King, they've bypassed humans of all persuasions and gone straight to the crazy, with the King singing, "SpongeBob Got Back," a remake to the tune of the Sir Mixalot classic featuring, yes, SpongeBob Square Pants, and a posse of ladies wearing striped knee socks and little maroon gym shorts, enhanced by what appear to be a phone book stuck down the back. Be warned: After a single viewing you'll find it hard to erase lines like: "Why don't we keep it grungy?/ Cause everyone knows he's so spongy!" And:  "Shake it! Shake it! Shake that cubicle butt!"

"Cubicle"? How could it possibly be "cubicle"? The word is self-evidently "cubical", which is to say "cube-shaped", and the writer should have figured this out from its context in the song, and even if she didn't (which clearly she didn't, because she repeats it in the article's closing line, "Now, I'm off to shake my cubicle butt"), any editor who saw it should have fixed it, but for far too long Salon has been loaded with unnecessary oversights and errors that make it pretty clear there's no copy-editing of any sort going on. Financial crash or no, that's just wrong.


From another recent Salon piece about the economy, by former Secretary of Labor Robert Reich:

Of course mortage rates are declining, mortgage orginations are surging, and people and companies are borrowing more.

My eye naturally landed on "orginations". I had never seen the word before, and it looked like a typo, but I am not an economist, so for all I knew, it was an actual word that economists use.

But no. A mortgage origination is an activation fee, and "orgination", as I had suspected, doesn't exist. The author should have spellchecked to catch this: he didn't, so an editor ought to have caught it--I mean, I did, and I wasn't even trying--but as we know, such a thing simply does not happen at Salon.


Blogger Joel said...

Just today one the AVClub (www.avclub.com) "...this Battlestar Galactica prequel finds humanity sewing the seeds of its destruction." Sewing the seeds to what? With what kind of needle?

Wednesday, April 22, 2009 5:36:00 PM  

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