Big Ho Telegraphs an Atrocity!
Kevin Kim, writing in his blog last Friday, August 28, cited the Telegraph to give an example of some "execrable writing." Literally, that means something like "expelled from the sacred," so I suppose we're dealing with depraved, postlapsarian language.
Anyway, he introduced the bad example with the lament that "[j]ournalists really need . . . to write better," adding that he cringed at this sentence "from an article about a Chinese cameraman's collision with fleet-footed Usain Bolt," who was celebrating his narrow victory:
But his momentary triumphalism, a Jamaican flag draped across his shoulders, was shattered when he failed to outrun a Chinese cameraman riding a Segway, the ubiquitous two wheeled self-propelled scooter, which then crashed into him.After posting that piece of scat quoted from the newspaper, Kevin challenged his readers:
Go ahead: write an improved version of the sentence in the comments.I considered taking him up on that challenge, but soon realized that the challenge was too easy, so I explained:
That sentence is so bad that even making it worse would be an improvement.I thought that was rather clever of me, but some wit now needs to follow up with the old saw, "That'd be funny if it weren't so true." To which I'd retort, "Nah . . . but it'd be true if it weren't so funny!"
Not that I know what that means. Can humor undermine truth?