Credit where credit is due
Rummaging around in the Internet the other day, I came across some mentions of a famous headline.
The way to make a headline famous, of course, is to make it fabulously bad. DEWEY DEFEATS TRUMAN comes readily to mind.
The headline of ill fame in this case rested above an article on the food page about home canning and preserving:
You can put pickles up yourself
On the Internet, citations identify The Washington Post as the paper that carried this headline. Now I know and admire many colleagues on the copy desk at The Post, and the paper does very well in its little way. But You can put pickles up yourself is, according to what I have been told for two decades, a Baltimore Sun headline, and a Richard Reeves column (also available on the Internet) agrees.
John Plunkett, a former assistant managing editor at The Sun, has the impression that the headline ran in the 1950s, beyond the reach of our electronic archive. The able Carol Julian of our library staff made a diligent search through clip files and microfilm without success. But she has more substantial work to do.
Actually, I ought to have more substantial work to do, management scum though I am. But I stand here in defense of my paper’s honor, and I issue this challenge:
I claim You can put pickles up yourself for The Sun, and if you say otherwise, prove me wrong.