Friday, February 16, 2018

Drowning Language



“English is a beautiful, bewildering language, and the deeper you dive into it, the more effort it takes to come up to the surface for air.”  

—Kory Stamper, lexicographer and writer, “Word by Word: The Secret Life of Dictionaries,” March 2017.



Editorial Comment: Which explains all the gasping, blue-faced, oxygen-deprived Scrabble people out there.



PeezPix by Ted Pease 

Bruce's Bass Back












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Ted Pease, Professor of Interesting Stuff, Trinidad, California. 
(Be)Friend The WORD

“I don’t think writers are sacred, but words are. They deserve respect. If you get the right ones, in the right order, you can nudge the world a little.” —Tom Stoppard

Thursday, February 15, 2018

The Unread Story



“The unread story is not a story; it is little black marks on wood pulp. The reader, reading it, makes it live: a live thing, a story.”

—Ursula K. Le Guin (1929-2018), fantasy writer. Obit.
















Editorial Comment: And once it gets out of the book and into your brain, there’s no getting it back into those little black marks. 



PeezPix by Ted Pease 

There’s a Story Here









Get TODAY'S WORD ON JOURNALISM in your email every weekday morning during WORD season. This is a free “service” sent to the 2,000,000 or so misguided subscribers around the planet, to infinity and beyond. If you have recovered from whatever illness led you to subscribe and don’t want it anymore, send “unsubscribe” to ted.pease@gmail.com. Or if you want to afflict someone else, send me the email address and watch the fun begin. (Disclaimer: I just quote ’em, I don’t necessarily endorse ’em. But all contain at least a kernel of insight. Don’t shoot the messenger.) #tedsword
 
Ted Pease, Professor of Interesting Stuff, Trinidad, California. 
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“I don’t think writers are sacred, but words are. They deserve respect. If you get the right ones, in the right order, you can nudge the world a little.” —Tom Stoppard

Wednesday, February 14, 2018

Tweety Birds



“Yes, yes, we journalists love Twitter, even feeling compelled to constantly regurgitate quotes from events, like presidential primary debates, that our prospective audience is already watching, as if we were AP correspondents in the Belgian Congo in a pre-Internet, pre-TV age.”

—James Warren, chief media writer, “For most, it doesn't generate much traffic,” Morning MediaWire, Poynter Institute, April 18, 2016.




Editorial Comment: The undeniable pull of being first with instantaneous drivel.

 
PeezPix by Ted Pease 

Rosebud









Get TODAY'S WORD ON JOURNALISM in your email every weekday morning during WORD season. This is a free “service” sent to the 2,000,000 or so misguided subscribers around the planet, to infinity and beyond. If you have recovered from whatever illness led you to subscribe and don’t want it anymore, send “unsubscribe” to ted.pease@gmail.com. Or if you want to afflict someone else, send me the email address and watch the fun begin. (Disclaimer: I just quote ’em, I don’t necessarily endorse ’em. But all contain at least a kernel of insight. Don’t shoot the messenger.) #tedsword
 
Ted Pease, Professor of Interesting Stuff, Trinidad, California. 
(Be)Friend The WORD

“I don’t think writers are sacred, but words are. They deserve respect. If you get the right ones, in the right order, you can nudge the world a little.” —Tom Stoppard

Tuesday, February 13, 2018

Making Apple Pie


“Newspapering deals with small daily bites from a fruit of indeterminate size. It may take dozens of bites before you are sure it’s an apple. Dozens and dozens more bites before you have any real idea how big the apple might be. It was that way about Watergate.”

—Ben Bradlee (1921-2014), executive editor, The Washington Post, from his obit, “Ben Bradlee, legendary Washington Post editor, dies at 93,” The Washington Post, Oct. 21, 2014. (Thanks to alert WORDster Barbara Zimmerman)
 Image: Bradlee examines the page 1 plate for the Aug. 10, 1974, edition. The headline: “Nixon Resigns.” David R. Legge/The Washington Post



Editorial Comment: Some bites are hard going down.

 


PeezPix by Ted Pease 

Frozen Cutler Marsh, Utah









Get TODAY'S WORD ON JOURNALISM in your email every weekday morning during WORD season. This is a free “service” sent to the 2,000,000 or so misguided subscribers around the planet, to infinity and beyond. If you have recovered from whatever illness led you to subscribe and don’t want it anymore, send “unsubscribe” to ted.pease@gmail.com. Or if you want to afflict someone else, send me the email address and watch the fun begin. (Disclaimer: I just quote ’em, I don’t necessarily endorse ’em. But all contain at least a kernel of insight. Don’t shoot the messenger.) #tedsword
 
Ted Pease, Professor of Interesting Stuff, Trinidad, California. 
(Be)Friend The WORD

“I don’t think writers are sacred, but words are. They deserve respect. If you get the right ones, in the right order, you can nudge the world a little.” —Tom Stoppard

Monday, February 12, 2018

Compatible Bedmates


“Take a good book to bed with you. Books do not snore.”

—Thea Dorn, German TV host and crime-fiction writer.













Editorial Comment: The same can’t be said of my iPad.

 



PeezPix by Ted Pease 

The Lighthouse’s New Home









Get TODAY'S WORD ON JOURNALISM in your email every weekday morning during WORD season. This is a free “service” sent to the 2,000,000 or so misguided subscribers around the planet, to infinity and beyond. If you have recovered from whatever illness led you to subscribe and don’t want it anymore, send “unsubscribe” to ted.pease@gmail.com. Or if you want to afflict someone else, send me the email address and watch the fun begin. (Disclaimer: I just quote ’em, I don’t necessarily endorse ’em. But all contain at least a kernel of insight. Don’t shoot the messenger.) #tedsword
 
Ted Pease, Professor of Interesting Stuff, Trinidad, California. 
(Be)Friend The WORD

“I don’t think writers are sacred, but words are. They deserve respect. If you get the right ones, in the right order, you can nudge the world a little.” —Tom Stoppard

Friday, February 9, 2018

GIGO



“Consider this: Never in human history has more information been available to more people. That’s a wonderful thing. But it is also true that never in human history has more bad information been available.

“The quickest, most direct way to ruin a democracy is to poison the information.”

—Scott Pelley, former anchor, CBS Evening News, “CBS’ Scott Pelley Calls Fake News ‘The Quickest, Most Direct Way to Ruin a Democracy’,” The Wrap, Nov. 22, 2016.


Editorial Comment: GIGO = Garbage In, Garbage Out.


 


PeezPix by Ted Pease 

Wild Crab












Get TODAY'S WORD ON JOURNALISM in your email every weekday morning during WORD season. This is a free “service” sent to the 2,000,000 or so misguided subscribers around the planet, to infinity and beyond. If you have recovered from whatever illness led you to subscribe and don’t want it anymore, send “unsubscribe” to ted.pease@gmail.com. Or if you want to afflict someone else, send me the email address and watch the fun begin. (Disclaimer: I just quote ’em, I don’t necessarily endorse ’em. But all contain at least a kernel of insight. Don’t shoot the messenger.) #tedsword
 
Ted Pease, Professor of Interesting Stuff, Trinidad, California. 
(Be)Friend The WORD

“I don’t think writers are sacred, but words are. They deserve respect. If you get the right ones, in the right order, you can nudge the world a little.” —Tom Stoppard

Thursday, February 8, 2018

Local News



“The only newspaper I continue to read with any regularity in hard copy, I mean — is our folksy neighborhood weekly. It survives by pretending it’s 1962, complete with what we used to call ‘chicken-dinner’ news. I mean no condescension. I read it faithfully every Thursday, even the ads. . . .
 
“The writing can be clunky and leans toward earnestness, but is never slick or trendy. A recent front-page story documented the swarms of grackles, starlings and cowbirds that congregate at twilight at a nearby intersection and shit on cars.” 
 
—Patrick Kurp, writer and blogger, “‘Asservation Is Today the Rage’,” Anecdotal Evidence, Jan. 24, 2018. (Thanks to alert WORDster Tony Seton)




Editorial Comment: More bird news you can use.


 

PeezPix by Ted Pease 

https://humsenior.files.wordpress.com/2018/01/snfebruary181.pdf
February Senior News











Get TODAY'S WORD ON JOURNALISM in your email every weekday morning during WORD season. This is a free “service” sent to the 2,000,000 or so misguided subscribers around the planet, to infinity and beyond. If you have recovered from whatever illness led you to subscribe and don’t want it anymore, send “unsubscribe” to ted.pease@gmail.com. Or if you want to afflict someone else, send me the email address and watch the fun begin. (Disclaimer: I just quote ’em, I don’t necessarily endorse ’em. But all contain at least a kernel of insight. Don’t shoot the messenger.) #tedsword
 
Ted Pease, Professor of Interesting Stuff, Trinidad, California. 
(Be)Friend The WORD

“I don’t think writers are sacred, but words are. They deserve respect. If you get the right ones, in the right order, you can nudge the world a little.” —Tom Stoppard

Wednesday, February 7, 2018

The Birds


“The relationship between the critic and writer is similar to the one between the pigeon and the statue.” 

—Ashwin Sanghi, Indian author.








Editorial Comment: That’s why, generally speaking, writers are not bird-lovers.
 

PeezPix by Ted Pease 

Firehouse








Get TODAY'S WORD ON JOURNALISM in your email every weekday morning during WORD season. This is a free “service” sent to the 2,000,000 or so misguided subscribers around the planet, to infinity and beyond. If you have recovered from whatever illness led you to subscribe and don’t want it anymore, send “unsubscribe” to ted.pease@gmail.com. Or if you want to afflict someone else, send me the email address and watch the fun begin. (Disclaimer: I just quote ’em, I don’t necessarily endorse ’em. But all contain at least a kernel of insight. Don’t shoot the messenger.) #tedsword
 
Ted Pease, Professor of Interesting Stuff, Trinidad, California. 
(Be)Friend The WORD

“I don’t think writers are sacred, but words are. They deserve respect. If you get the right ones, in the right order, you can nudge the world a little.” —Tom Stoppard

Tuesday, February 6, 2018

Journalism Is Dead

 
“I lived through Pentagon Papers and Watergate, Iran Contra and Whitewater and more but 1st time in my life seeing Press trying to keep lid on govt actions rather than fully expose. They hate @realDonaldTrump THAT much. More than they love truth. Sad. Journalism is dead.”

—Mike Huckabee, former presidential candidate and Republican governor of Arkansas, tweeting Saturday. Feb. 4, 2018.

Editorial Comment: More than Mike loves hyperbole?
 
Other comment:
“Imagine the Pentagon Papers, but instead of the actual papers, Ellsberg released a memo describing what was in the Pentagon Papers WITHOUT HAVING ACTUALLY READ THE PENTAGON PAPERS.” —Chris Hayes, MSNBC commentator.
“Imagine further that the memo was a politically motivated distortion of what was in the Pentagon Papers — and another memo pointing out the distortions and omissions was suppressed to enable the distortions to be believed and take hold before the truth could out.” —Norman Ornstein, political scientist, American Enterprise Institute.
Vocabulary-Builder (From 2/5): ASS•er•va•tion. n. acknowledgment, affirmation, declaration; act of recognizing authority or truth of something.


PeezPix by Ted Pease 

Mendon Peak








Get TODAY'S WORD ON JOURNALISM in your email every weekday morning during WORD season. This is a free “service” sent to the 2,000,000 or so misguided subscribers around the planet, to infinity and beyond. If you have recovered from whatever illness led you to subscribe and don’t want it anymore, send “unsubscribe” to ted.pease@gmail.com. Or if you want to afflict someone else, send me the email address and watch the fun begin. (Disclaimer: I just quote ’em, I don’t necessarily endorse ’em. But all contain at least a kernel of insight. Don’t shoot the messenger.) #tedsword
 
Ted Pease, Professor of Interesting Stuff, Trinidad, California. 
(Be)Friend The WORD

“I don’t think writers are sacred, but words are. They deserve respect. If you get the right ones, in the right order, you can nudge the world a little.” —Tom Stoppard

Monday, February 5, 2018

A Little Ham

.


“I started work as a reporter just in time to learn how to write, before editors (and readers, and most reporters) stopped caring. In the seventies, symptoms of morbidity were already undeniable, . . . but I sure had a lot of fun. I think of newspapers as my graduate school, just as Ishmael declared ‘a whale-ship was my Yale College and my Harvard.’ We were certainly kept as poor as grad students. One year we got canned hams as Christmas bonuses, and were grateful.” 

—Patrick Kurp, writer and blogger, Asservation Is Today the Rage,” Anecdotal Evidence, Jan. 24, 2018. (Thanks to alert WORDster Tony Seton)


Editorial Comment: Use “asservation” in a sentence. Dare ya.



PeezPix by Ted Pease 

Split Rock. Looks like a cleavered canned ham, now that you point it out.











Get TODAY'S WORD ON JOURNALISM in your email every weekday morning during WORD season. This is a free “service” sent to the 2,000,000 or so misguided subscribers around the planet, to infinity and beyond. If you have recovered from whatever illness led you to subscribe and don’t want it anymore, send “unsubscribe” to ted.pease@gmail.com. Or if you want to afflict someone else, send me the email address and watch the fun begin. (Disclaimer: I just quote ’em, I don’t necessarily endorse ’em. But all contain at least a kernel of insight. Don’t shoot the messenger.) #tedsword
 
Ted Pease, Professor of Interesting Stuff, Trinidad, California. 
(Be)Friend The WORD

“I don’t think writers are sacred, but words are. They deserve respect. If you get the right ones, in the right order, you can nudge the world a little.” —Tom Stoppard

Friday, February 2, 2018

A Good, Green Book

.
“I won’t read a book because I’m told it’s good for me. Reading is not therapeutic and it’s not like eating kale. Literature is slippery and defies pre-fabricated marketing. By definition it surprises and sometimes offends.”


—Patrick Kurp, writer and blogger, “‘Chekhov Had Really Written in Yiddish,’” Anecdotal Evidence, Jan. 19, 2018.


Editorial Comment: And eating kale, while sometimes surprising and offensive, is not like reading.




PeezPix by Ted Pease 

Look Out










Get TODAY'S WORD ON JOURNALISM in your email every weekday morning during WORD season. This is a free “service” sent to the 2,000,000 or so misguided subscribers around the planet, to infinity and beyond. If you have recovered from whatever illness led you to subscribe and don’t want it anymore, send “unsubscribe” to ted.pease@gmail.com. Or if you want to afflict someone else, send me the email address and watch the fun begin. (Disclaimer: I just quote ’em, I don’t necessarily endorse ’em. But all contain at least a kernel of insight. Don’t shoot the messenger.) #tedsword
 
Ted Pease, Professor of Interesting Stuff, Trinidad, California. 
(Be)Friend The WORD

“I don’t think writers are sacred, but words are. They deserve respect. If you get the right ones, in the right order, you can nudge the world a little.” —Tom Stoppard

Thursday, February 1, 2018

Sugarcoated Evil

.

“Morning shows are a necessary evil. Viewers need the news sugarcoated in a way that will not lead to despair. So it is, at its best, news with the edges polished. The delivery is caffeinated, unbearably upbeat, and rapid. It is news for people who can’t handle the news quite so early in the day.” 

—Edward Burmila, political science professor and blogger, “The Power Behind the Throne Is ‘Fox & Friends’,” The Nation, Jan. 29, 2018.


Editorial Comment: And for people who can’t stomach that much cotton-candy fluff so early in the day, there’s “Morning Edition.”





PeezPix by Ted Pease 

Outhouse












Get TODAY'S WORD ON JOURNALISM in your email every weekday morning during WORD season. This is a free “service” sent to the 2,000,000 or so misguided subscribers around the planet, to infinity and beyond. If you have recovered from whatever illness led you to subscribe and don’t want it anymore, send “unsubscribe” to ted.pease@gmail.com. Or if you want to afflict someone else, send me the email address and watch the fun begin. (Disclaimer: I just quote ’em, I don’t necessarily endorse ’em. But all contain at least a kernel of insight. Don’t shoot the messenger.) #tedsword
 
Ted Pease, Professor of Interesting Stuff, Trinidad, California. 
(Be)Friend The WORD

“I don’t think writers are sacred, but words are. They deserve respect. If you get the right ones, in the right order, you can nudge the world a little.” —Tom Stoppard