Happy Thanksgiving

...to all who have ever sat (or continue to sit) at the "kids' table":

From Shouts & Murmurs: The Wisdom of Children by Simon Rich (New Yorker, 2007):

A Conversation at the Grownup Table, as Imagined at the Kids’ Table

MOM: Pass the wine, please. I want to become crazy.


GRANDMOTHER: Did you see the politics? It made me angry.

DAD: Me, too. When it was over, I had sex.

UNCLE: I’m having sex right now.

DAD: We all are.

MOM: Let’s talk about which kid I like the best.

DAD: (laughing) You know, but you won’t tell.

MOM: If they ask me again, I might tell.

FRIEND FROM WORK: Hey, guess what! My voice is pretty loud!

DAD: (laughing) There are actual monsters in the world, but when my kids ask I pretend like there aren’t.

MOM: I’m angry! I’m angry all of a sudden!

DAD: I’m angry, too! We’re angry at each other!

MOM: Now everything is fine.

DAD: We just saw the PG-13 movie. It was so good.

MOM: There was a big sex.

FRIEND FROM WORK: I am the loudest! I am the loudest!

(Everybody laughs.)

MOM: I had a lot of wine, and now I’m crazy!

GRANDFATHER: Hey, do you guys know what God looks like?

ALL: Yes.

GRANDFATHER: Don’t tell the kids.


Fake AP StyleBook

I learned about Fake AP StyleBook this morning via folderol. Though folderol wasn't, I'm apparently late to the game, as the 382-tweet Twitter account, active since October 20th, has already attracted an agent and possible book deal.

I spent my morning productively reading all 382 tweets. Here are my favorites:


FakeAPStyleBook posts:

"Bloody Mary" on first and second mentions, "Mary" on third to avoid summoning her through the mirror.

Use the word "cluster" like this: "Ricardo Montalban proffered a porcelain tray of delicious caramel nut clusters."

The Times New Roman font is neither new nor of Roman descent. 'Sup with that? SEE ALSO: Courier Font Not Used By Actual Couriers.

"Video Cassette Recorder" on first reference, "VCR" on second, "We're still talking about these?" thereafter.

Terms of art are only four years in length and art is not constitutionally allowed more than two consecutive terms.

Avoid excessive use of contractions. The baby will come when it comes.

Use "The Incredible Hulk" the first time in piece, then just "Hulk." See also Sensational Dionne Warwick, Mesmerizing Janet Reno.

Do not spell out laughs. Describe them: "He laughed muppetly."

In a byline, "With additional reporting by" can be shortened to "Big Ups To."

A 'queue' is a short line of people or other objects. A 'queueueueueue' is a longer line.

List sexual positions in alphabetical order. Remember, "alphabetical order" is itself a sexual position.

When covering a flood always include a photo of a dog stranded on a roof. Throw your own dog up there if needed.

The plural of BFF is "Heathers."

When referring to Lake Titicaca leave a lot of space afterwards for your readers to just laugh and laugh. (See also: "Ball State")

For unnamed sources, agree on an attribution that gives the reader an idea of who it is. Ex.: "rhymes with President Bobama"

Do not use Latin names of plants and insects. Use their American names, such as "viney grower" and "shit bug."

Do not use "Whoomp! There it is!" unless it actually is there.

Breasts should not be referred to as "jugs" unless you need it to rhyme with something else in the article. See also: cans, sweater puppies.

Stories about people who claim to have psychic abilities must always be written as though they aren't liars, for some reason.

''Hanson Dark'' or ''Menudo Latte'' may be used in place of ''Jonas Brothers.''

To denote air quotes, "use quotes."

Replace "situation deteriorated/worsened" with "shit [just] got real." Ex: On day three of the hostage crisis, shit got real.

The plural of "Pokemon" is "vermin."

Instead of either "multi-talented" or "multitalented" use "bisexual".

It is poor newsroom etiquette to throw yourself out of the window to prove that your co-worker is Superman.

Slander is harder to prove, so avoid libel charges by just yellin' that shit out the window.

The correct modifier for a student seeking a master's degree is "in for a disappointment."

Instead of prepositions, it's preferable to end sentences with propositions, so why don't we start a dry cleaning business?

When faced with a challenging name, simply refer to the individual by nicknames like "Scout" or "Champ".

Use "verbal" to compare words with some other form of communication ("poor verbal skills"), use "oral" to be more popular.

"Lego" is the plural. There is no singular because what the hell can you do with only one of them?

Use "inflammable" for wimpy stuff like sparklers, "flammable" for shit that blows up REAL GOOD.

The plural of "vagina" is "vaginas." The plural of "penis" is gross, nobody wants to read about that.

Avoid using the colloquialism "gonna." EXCEPTION: "You gonna eat the rest of that sandwich?"

Do not change weight of gorilla in phrase, “800-lb gorilla in the room.” Correct weight is 800 lbs. DO NOT CHANGE GORILLA'S WEIGHT!

While it’s tempting to call them ‘baristi’ because of the Italian roots, the plural of ‘barista’ is ‘journalism majors.’

Precede basic statements of fact with 'allegedly' to avoid accusations of bias: 'the allegedly wet water,' 'the allegedly poisonous poison'

Change British spelling to American spelling or risk being hung as a spy for the Queen.

Affect is verb: "The songs of Liza Minnelli affected the crops." Effect is noun: "Behold the effect Liza has on the corn!"

Use "i.e." when providing a specific clarifying example, and use "e.g." when referencing noted actor E.G. Marshall.

You may not say "no one could have suspected..." until you have interviewed everyone on planet Earth.

Take note; the semicolon is never to be used correctly.

Dr Pepper doesn't have a period in it. An easy way to remember this is 'Doctors are dudes and dudes don't get periods.'