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Wrapping up

The new year is well under way, but there remain some loose ends from the year just past. If you have a few minutes to spare, let’s dispose of them.

 

Calm yourselves, hons

My worthy former colleague Rafael Alvarez has weighed in on the bogus controversy about Denise Whiting’s trademarking of hon. I understand and respect his views, though I do not entirely concur with them. So before I leave this subject, as part of last year’s business, I’d like to explain why I think that all the outrage is misplaced.

Ms. Whiting has a brand to promote, and, so far as I can tell, has been doing so through legal and conventional means. She has not, like the horse racing and gambling interests, or BGE, attempted to gouge the public to make good for inept business decisions. She has not, like the insurance companies, extorted higher payments in exchange for reduced service. And I still think it odd that a city awash in tacky Ravens memorabilia challenges her on the grounds of taste and propriety.

Those who dislike the food she serves or the tchotchkes she flogs are under no compulsion to patronize her businesses. Those who do—and they appear to be numerous—are no threat to public order.

The torrent of vilification sweeping over her says uglier things about Baltimore than anything she has done. For an example, a remark posted by “W.C.H.” as a comment to Mr. Alvarez’s article:

Mr. McIntyre - Your constant defense of Ms. Whiting is getting tiresome. One has to wonder what your personal connection is to her if you're willing to stick your own neck out in defense of selfishness and greed. I also have to assume that you would have defended Irsay as well. I for one wonder why the Sun hires hacks like you.

For the record, I do not know Denise Whiting and am not in her pay. And how much of a hack I am is left to you to decide. But my point is not that “W.C.H.” has left me smarting—I’ve been subjected to contumely far more expertly delivered, and my hide is still intact. My point is that for most people there is no argument on the merits; anyone who presumes to disagree with the pack baying against Ms. Whiting is branded as having discreditable motives.

My prediction for 2011: Ms. Whiting will continue to draw customers, and the noise about her will subside as some other non-issue attracts the attention of those who like to feel aggrieved.

 

Flyover boys

Christopher Harper, a journalism professor at Temple University whom I met a few years ago when we were teaching in a summer program in Italy, has brought out a book, Flyover Country: Baby Boomers and Their Stories, which I commend to your attention.

Mr. Harper is a distinguished journalist—one of the first on the scene after the Jim Jones cult’s mass suicide in Guyana, for one—but at heart he is a son of “flyover country,” that middle section of the country that gets comparatively little attention from either coast, except to misunderstand and undervalue it.

He examines what became of the members of his high school class, the Class of 1969, in Sioux Falls, South Dakota: the values they grew up with, the experiences they shared, and their subsequent lives, including his own career. It is a compact picture of the boomer generation and the shifting values of American culture.

I gave the manuscript an edit and found much in it to identify with, since I, too, was a member of the Class of 1969, and the half-Southern, half-Midwestern values with which I grew up in Kentucky were similar to Chris Harper’s. We both even had a brief, unlikely career in rock music.* There is sound, clear, straightforward, evocative writing in his book. If you grew up in flyover country in our generation, you will recognize yourself. If you did not, you can learn something about those of us who did.

 

Oh, that Mr. Mencken was a caution

Continuing to make my leisurely way through the two volumes of H.L. Mencken’s Prejudices, I feel sad for the reviewers who had to make a forced march through more than a thousand pages of text (unless, as I suspect from some of the reviews, they skipped a good bit). Every page has some manifestation of the characteristic Mencken tone. For example:

On Richard Wagner’s first wife: “She was a singer, and had the brains of one.”

On truth and lying: “The truth never caresses; it stings. ...”

On the conduct of public officials: “Anything is fair and decent that keeps a man his job. That has been the settled American doctrine since Jackson’s time.”

On architecture: “[T]he principles of architectural design ... at the very dawn of history have been unchanged ever since, and are poll-parroted docilely every time a sky-scraper thrusts its snout among the cherubim.”

I shall be sorry to come to the end.

 

*If you have some difficulty in visualizing me at the keyboard as the band swings into “Twist and Shout,” then you are no more gobsmacked than my own children.

 

Posted by John McIntyre at 11:26 AM | | Comments (29)
        

Comments

John: As a homeowner in Hampden for 10 years, I have followed this controversy closely. This entire dustup was Ms. Whiting's creation, because she chose to brag about her copyright and the fact that she had forced some merchant at BWI to hand over all his merchandise. No one would begrudge her the defense of her legal rights, but the bragging and boasting made her sound like a bully.

Also, I believe people are simply tired of her contention that she single handedly turned Hampden around. What turned it around was that it is a safe neighborhood with an abundant supply of decent, inexpensive housing--a place whose geography isolates it from much of the city's woes. (Jones Falls and the Expressway on one side, Wyman Park and Hopkins on the other and Roland Park adjoining.) Ms. Whiting may brag about coming in in 1992, but the late, lamented Tommy Thompson was selling gourmet coffee beans and British groceries at the corner of Chestnut and 33rd (where the larger Grano is now) in the late 1970s.

Finally, I and many others find the white working class stereotypes perpetuated by the Cafe Hon and the bathetic HonFest offensive. But then, white working class people are the last permissible targets of ridicule in 2011 America, aren't they?

Mr. Purdy, what you say is eminently reasonable. And if the discussion had followed your example, rather than the almost hysterical abuse that has instead been characteristic, it would have been less embarrassing to the city.

John, it's ridiculous that Ms. Whiting could benefit from a tradition that was longstanding before she opened her cafe. "Hon" was a Baltimore endearment used by the public for decades, and it is amazing that this private "ownership" still stands. I hope no one opens up a "Good Morning" cafe.

Here are a couple of thoughts I had in response:

First, you make it seem like the viciousness is one-sided. It's not. Just check out lettertohon(dot)blogspot(dot)com and read the profanity-laced responses from a Cafe Hon employee to a rational critique of the situation. There are vitriolic statements on both sides.

Second, it seems the Sun has let Ms. Whiting make many statements; the veracity of these statements is not often challenged and should be. She recently told Ms. Vozzella that she never made "one dime" off the trademark, while simple reading comprehension of Sun articles indicates otherwise (she charged a charity who had a hon-themed party). She made other claims about the extent of her trademark power and litigation that have proven questionable from online commenters who claim they were sued by Ms. Whiting. I would love to see further investigation on how she has legally protected her trademark, rather than how she says she has.

I have no problems with her trademark, but she boasted about charging a charity for hosting a hon-themed party. I find that to be legally questionable (how can a trademark extend to a party concept?) and morally reprehensible.

My prediction for 2011: Ms. Whiting will continue to draw customers, but her cred with Baltimoreans is ruined. She will have to make due with unwitting tourists and suburban families who get their toes curled by slumming it up in Hampden.

Is there something discreditable about "making do" with customers?

"And I still think it odd that a city awash in tacky Ravens memorabilia challenges her on the grounds of taste and propriety."

Once I read that I realized that you are just being a troll.

If she really wants to do some good for the Hampden community that she proclaims she built how about she get all the junkies off the streets at the 7-11 and Royal Farms. Help to start a rehab center that would really help impact the community.

I still won't go to any businesses that she owns. I think she will see a major decline in attendance at this years Honfest.

Although I do feel there are far bigger problems in this very city that people should be concerned with, I think calling the backlash "embarassing" is completely condescending.

What is embarassing is the white working class stereotype Ms Whiting has elevated to absurd proportions through an uninspired cafe, mediocre bar, uber tacky street festival, and now, candystore. The trademark reveal has simply unleashed the mounting negative public opinion on the empire she has created.

I am actually hoping Ms Whiting holds onto the trademark and the HonDeadHorse can die a slow death.

I am completely sick of seeing, and hearing about everything HON.

"...the bogus controversy about Denise Whiting’s trademarking of hon"

Mr. McIntyre, you're slant is quite evident based on this statement alone.

Additionally, The Sun chose to publish a tearful, hand-wringing Op-Ed decrying the treatment of Whiting by her sister while failing to identify her as such. Shame on them and shame on you but most of all shame on Whiting's sister for hiding who she was.

Whiting has consistently claimed she ~had~ to trademark the word because she could not trademark the white oval in which the word is written, yet Frederick, MD was able to trademark their white oval. Outer Banks, NC was able to trademark their white oval. The Sun has chosen, and you have chosen along with them, not to investigate Whiting's statements for accuracy. 'Why?' is the question I ask.

Additionally, there are documented instances of Whiting taking successful legal action against those who would use the word hon, whether inside a white oval or not: the BWI incident, the charity event, the MTA.

We, the opposition to Whiting's actions, have a right to expect the only sizable newspaper left in B'more to investigate. My grandfather worked for The News American, btw and he called all his children hon. He was in no way the trash Whiting portrays 'hons' as being, nor was his wife.

Frankly, Mr. McIntyre, you will continue to take heat for your position so long as your 'reporting' warrants that heat. Get the facts out and the pushback will change.

And lastly, please stop painting the trademark opposition with black paint and the Cafe Hon supporters with white paint. Cafe Hon supporters' name calling, use of profanity, false assumptions about protesters' employment status, educational achievements, criminal records has been deplorable. Why you have chosen not to report on that is beyond me.

Baltimore is a lot of things. A town that allows itself to be pushed around is not one of them.

RedDonnaAnn, former Hon waitress

The expert on dishing out contumely discusses how good he is at taking it. LOL!

YES, there are other newsworthy things to discuss, but the hontroversy won't die until being successfully overturned. DW's statements made in print are too much an affront to the true Baltimorean for it to die on it's own. If you disagree, then you don't know this town very well. My prediction for 2011 is that someone will contest it and win.

There's not one original idea in Cafe Hon. Characters based on Hairspray, a name based on a colloquialism, and references to Elvis. Okay, she's good at finding things to use for her own devices. That hardly qualifies her to tell the MTA that they have to get her approval to use their Hairspray-rip-off ad concept. Is anyone really supposed to believe that some random t-shirt or mug which includes the word Hon will have an adverse impact on her business? This is about overstepping one's bounds and Whiting deserves to be criticized for it, especially since she chose to boast about it in an interview. Perhaps she needs to learn to be more circumspect. Pride goeth before a fall, as they say.

I suppose you'll just have to give up on me as incorrigible, because I find the whole range of responses, from the pursed-lipped moralizing about Baltimore's endangered hon heritage to the flat-out raving, ludicrous.

Hey my mom used to call me Sweetheart too, maybe I should head up to Owings mills to boycott..Oh and Nike trademarked Air, does that mean I can't breathe it..But i guess what makes them different is they are multi-national companies and can't be bullied by internet fodder not a small businesswoman trying to make her way and succeed in a less than stellar economy in a city that taxes too high and is chasing small business and people out of it.. You say ludicrous Mr Mcintyre..I say your right on the money. It is really dangerous to see some people with a forum

Mr McIntyre:

Please indulge this blue collar descendant of hon speaking folk.

What does "engangered" mean?

TowsonMom, "engangered" for "endangered" is what we call in the business, if you'll pardon a term of art, a typographical error.

A gentleman identifying himself as a Hampdenite has just tweeted to the effect that I am "one of the few working @BaltimoreSun who are getting the #Hon thing right."

That's so sweet. You've only got 16,627 to go before you'll have 100 support from Hampdenites.

That's so sweet. You've only got 16,627 to go before you'll have 100% support from Hampdenites.

Mr. McIntyre: If the discussion is so "bogus", why are you boasting about someone taking your side? It seems you're only tired of those that oppose you. How very Palinesque of you.

Jerry, it's good to hear your input. How is Kate Callahan/Spring Ray Media? It's amazing how your argument (down to the "Nike Air") is identical wherever you post, albeit with less curse words here.

As for lost jobs, what about the jobs at the airport that were challenged after the Cafe Hon owner seized merchandise? What about the jobs at "Thanks, Hon", a gift shop threatened with litigation? Was she legally entitled to do so? Perhaps...challenges to legal threats are expensive, and it's cheaper to back down, so we don't know for sure. Your paper has printed varied 'expert' opinion that couldn't agree on her legal merits, so for you to say that arguments against her trademark lack merit is short-sighted, unless you have a background in trademark law that you aren't revealing.

Since you're focused on the merits, I ask again: What right does she have to charge a charity to have a hon-themed party? I think it's a logical question to ask, and one that, until I get an answer, will prevent me from spending money at this establishment. If that argument lacks merit, I apologize.

Who is Kate Callahan? I don't particularly know her, but thanks for assuming. The gift shop at the airport was selling counterfiet cafe Hon logo merchandise, and it was only some stickers. So I doubt anyone lost their job over that. Oh and the guy who was printing the counterfiet merchandise now prints all the Cafe hon merchandise. Another little tidbit always omitted from the story. Thanks Hon closed due to the poor economy and Ms Whiting never pursued anything against them, and as for this charity that everyone likes to bring up and that whopping $25 charged, again false. The catering company who was catering the party was asked to donate $25 to Ms Whiting's non-profit in the name of the Non-profit(NOT CHARITY) having the party, for her help with the party as a courtesy. The story you don't hear which is always omitted by the boy-cotters and the news is that Ms Whiting donated her time to help run the party in full HON attire and also donated almost a $1000 worth of HON merchandise(i.e.Beehives, cat eye glasses, boas) to the non profit for their party. The part you don't hear. But she is Lucifer reincarnated according to you all and greedy and only interested in making a buck. Don't we live in America. Isn't that why we separated from the British to be free to capitalize and make our lives better. Why is she any different. Why is she being Villafied. Are you going to tell me that if the owner of the Greene Turtle franchise was walking through BWI and saw shirts NOT distributed by his company being sold for profit he wouldnt have the right to be pissed and do something about it. So how is she different. So take your tired same ol' arguments and find the facts before you start running your mouths and causing a mob mentality. This trademark has never affected you, is not affecting you and will never affect you. She stole nothing from you or anyone, she is just trying to protect her business and the 50+ employees she provides livelihoods for. A business that she put her sweat and her money into. Do you own a business, have you ever had to trademark anything Wendy???...Probably not, so how do you make opinions on things you no nothing about. Or are you just jumping on the bandwagon like the rest of the bashers and name callers???...I guess its just human nature to try and take someone down who is succeeding.. And we all know people love a good scandal...I guess thats how rags like the Enquirer stay in business!!! Just label me disappointed in my City who chooses to fight against someone who is creating jobs, paying exorbitant city taxes and still opening another business, putting on a Festival that not only benefits local charities, the city itself and the other Hampden Merchants, and lets the growing city drug and crime and corruption problems just keep festering without a peep. Way to go Baltimore!!!!! Way to beat up on the little guy!!!

Well "Jerry" you seem to have intimate knowledge of this business. Care to disclose your relationship? I've just followed this story in the media, was a semi-regular customer, and have become disgusted.

First, what does the printer have anything to do with the small business owner at the airport? Nothing. And it's nice that you are so compassionate about Denise's small business and her employees, but have no regard for the airport vendor (who was selling stickers with the word "Hon" on it, not counterfeit merchandise). As for your Greene Turtle analogy, it's the equivalent of those owners trying to take legal action against anyone with a turtle shirt or sticker. A turtle is something they didn't originate, but now have certain limited legal entitlements. Sound familiar? I don't care if Greene Turtle goes after knockoff shirts, they should, but if they went after generic turtle shirt vendors or charged a non-profit to have a turtle-themed party, I'd be just as irate. And if they bragged about doing so, as Denise did in the Sun, it would be even more appalling.

Second, I've read about Denise's non-profit, which (according to her son) does not even have a mission statement and had not does one charitable act since its 2007 inception. She took from a non-profit and funneled it to her barely-existent one. Please correct me on any of those facts. And since you have such intimate details of this, what was the non-profit that you claim wasn't a charity?

People have valid criticism of Denise and her business. To dismiss any critique is narrow-minded, and is only hurting her business, just like her silence is. If the facts are not correct, demand a retraction from the Sun. Otherwise, I refuse to patronize a business that brags about hurting another business in the name of a legally questionable trademark, and I won't support someone who takes money away from a charity (or, possibly, a non-profit).

Well "Jerry" you seem to have intimate knowledge of this business. Care to disclose your relationship? I've just followed this story in the media, was a semi-regular customer, and have become disgusted.

First, what does the printer have anything to do with the small business owner at the airport? Nothing. And it's nice that you are so compassionate about Denise's small business and her employees, but have no regard for the airport vendor (who was selling stickers with the word "Hon" on it, not counterfeit merchandise). As for your Greene Turtle analogy, it's the equivalent of those owners trying to take legal action against anyone with a turtle shirt or sticker. A turtle is something they didn't originate, but now have certain limited legal entitlements. Sound familiar? I don't care if Greene Turtle goes after knockoff shirts, they should, but if they went after generic turtle shirt vendors or charged a non-profit to have a turtle-themed party, I'd be just as irate. And if they bragged about doing so, as Denise did in the Sun, it would be even more appalling.

Second, I've read about Denise's non-profit, which (according to her son) does not even have a mission statement and had not does one charitable act since its 2007 inception. She took from a non-profit and funneled it to her barely-existent one. Please correct me on any of those facts. And since you have such intimate details of this, what was the non-profit that you claim wasn't a charity?

People have valid criticism of Denise and her business. To dismiss any critique is narrow-minded, and is only hurting her business, just like her silence is. If the facts are not correct, demand a retraction from the Sun. Otherwise, I refuse to patronize a business that brags about hurting another business in the name of a legally questionable trademark, and I won't support someone who takes money away from a charity (or, possibly, a non-profit).

We can agree to disagree..The printer who printed the counterfeit merchandise distributed it to the airport gift shop. You are only hearing the side of the story twisted by the media and the FB pages. which has come down to name calling and graphic photoshops of her. That on point. I know denise on a personal level and know she has stuck her own foot in her mouth with these interviews. she is a restaurant owner, not a TV personality who has been subjected to severe hate and scrutiny over nothing. Did she create HON??...NO..But she embraced it more than anyone else and made a business out of it, and a festival. And before this when you mentioned HON in town, people thought of Denise Whiting. This is a woman who loves her family and friends, loves Hampden(and lives up the street BTW,not in Upper Baltimore County as the news reported), loves Baltimore, and in no way deserves to be held in the same regard as Robert Irsay. Where he took something and left town, she took HON expanded it and is making Hampden and Baltimore better because of it with new jobs and more money back into the city. And just to let you know how Greedy of a Bitch she is here is a list of her 2010 charity donations
-Mildred Mindell Cancer Foundation, Inc.
-The Family Tree (Child Abuse Prevention)
-Brown Memorial Weekday School (employee's daughters' school)
-Steppin' Out Black and White (benefitting TurnAround Inc.; survivors of domestic violence/sexual assault)
-Roland Park Community Foundation's Spring Celebration Silent Auction
-Crime Victims Emergency Fund (Office of the State's Attorney)
-Johns Hopkins University: National Student Employment Week in April
-Girl Scouts of Central Maryland's Silent Auction (2010 Distinguished Women's Award)
-Kelly's Dream to Cure Melanoma Shrimp Feast
-Edward A. Myerberg Senior Center (Pikesville) Fabulous Fifties Night Silent Auction
-Heads Together for Haiti
-Medfield Heights Elementary and the Boy Scouts Unit 170
-Hampden Family Center: After School Enrichment Program
-Extra Mile Art Walk (Episcopal Community Services of Maryland under United Way)
-Heart and Sole Stroll: The Red Devils (Supporting Breast Cancer Families)
-WAMU 88.5 FM MemberCard ("helps public broadcasting stations provide an essential public service")
-Hampden Family Center: Taste of Hampden
-Celebrating the Gift Gala Auction (Little Sisters of the Poor)
-Shop-a-Paw-Looza 2010 (Maryland SPCA)
-Festival of Trees (Kennedy Krieger Institute)
-AIA Associates and Young Architects Forum of Baltimore Annual Photo Contest
-AIA Baltimore Golf Outing
-Historic Ships in Baltimore Silent Auction
-JHU Staff Recognition Barbeque
-Loyola University Maryland's Annual Fund 7/26
-Loyola University Maryland's Annual Fund 5/6
-Loyola University Maryland's Senior Class Day Scholarship Fund (for students experiencing financial crises)
-May 16th Event
-Verizon: Gina Jones
-Anne Arundel County Teen Leaders 4H Club
-Baltimore Museum of Art's Colleague Recognition Meeting
-Johns Hopkins University Chapter of Habitat for Humanity
-Leukemia and Lymphoma Society: Team in Training (San Diego Marathon)
-Teen Leaders 4H Club of Anne Arundel County
-Greater Homewood Community Corporation: Adult Literacy and ESOL Program; Scrabble Fundraiser
-Loyola College - Eric Sappington of Loyola Radio Station
-The Ingenuity Project (science education of children in Baltimore City)
-WBAL during the Blizzard
-St. Thomas Aquinas School
-Tee Off with the Odyssey School: Tee Off for Tutoring
-Moveable Feast: Dining Out for Life
-Mayor's Christmas Parade
-St. Mary's County Oyster Festival: National Oyster Shucking Contest
-Reisterstown Elementary School
-St. Thomas Aquinas School: Race for Education
-Hampden Baseball: Hampden Small Fry Association
-Hampden Family Center's 15th Anniversary Celebration
-Hampden Village Merchants Association
-Medfield Heights Elementary PTA
-Roosevelt Co Ed Softball League 2010 Season
-St. Thomas Aquinas School: Golf Tournament: "Achievement in Golf" prizes
-Fathers' Day Picnic (Misc. Organization)
-Baltimore Sun (Misc. Fundraiser)
-Jasmine's House
-Recycled Love
-Baltimore City Police Department Food Drive
-Umbrella Radio
This woman gives back to this city 10 fold but all people can center on is $25 that wasnt taken from a charity or non-profit it was donated by a catering company. These partial stories have done nothing but propagate hate to an sweet woman for what???.....A 3 letter non- word. So when she is run out of town by the 4 picketers who showed up who ran into the restaurant and store throwing their leaflets to everyone and the Facebookarazzi, the only ones who get hurt by it are the charities and the employees, and the Hampden merchants who make a killing off HONFEST, and the city who get nice returns from the festival. Seems trivial at this point..My wish for 2011 is that people put this much fervor into ridding the city of drugs and crime and corruption instead of trying to rid it of someone who gives so much back.

Thank you for responding, though you responded to very few of my points. And I'm not sure how you're above the level of discourse, between your coarse language and comparisons of civil arguments with those who name call.

You didn't respond at all about what Denise's charity does, nor did you say what non-profit she took money from. I therefore assume that these facts are correct: Her charity has been in existence since 2007, doesn't even have a mission statement, but took money from a non-profit. As for your list of "charitable contributions", many are commmendable, but I didn't realize that Verizon and WBAL are charities.

Denise used legal means to hurt an airport vendor's business. The printer was a middle man, and her relationship with that printer doesn't change the fact that that vendor was forced to pay her legal fees (Denise thinks), and lost product he paid for. Some legal experts have said that if this vendor had challenged the mark, he would have won, but as a small business owner, it was probably easier to capitulate.

Regardless, Denise made a decision to exercise her trademark in this fashion, and to tell the media about in a way that many found boastful. She can either stand by her decision, at whatever risk to her employees, or she do something to change it. Either way, stop blaming the critics.

There is enough hysteria to go around on both sides of this issue. The folks who have an issue with Ms. Whiting would have us boycott another business owner because he speaks out in favor of Ms. Whiting. Ridiculous! Ms. Whiting has told so many tales and exaggerations that, quite frankly, it should surprise no-one that she is not believed now. Talk about somebody who should spend some cash on a good PR campaign!! But, the most ludicrous thing I've heard yet is "And before this when you mentioned HON in town, people thought of Denise Whiting." ARE YOU KIDDING ME?!?! That goes to the heart of the matter! Ms. Whiting and her supporters actually believe that! They actually believe that before this incident, if you used the term Hon, folks thought of Denise Whiting! I can't speak for other citizens our our wonderful city, but I most certainly did not! I can't imagine that all those men and women who use Hon ever thought of Denise Whiting. That's not an insult, mind you, just common sense. Come to think of it, if she had used some common sense in the first place, none of this would have happened!!

As someone who lives beyond the western end of US Hwy 50, the "hysteria ... on both sides of this issue" (as Andre puts it) mystifies me. It's not that I'm looking for an education on the subject; I think it would just be a waste of effort seeing as how I've read a bunch of these blog posts and comments and still feel befogged. Never have I felt so alien to an American controversy.

I think it's not merely that it doesn't apply to my life. I can often still understand such inapplicable local issues to some degree. It's that I feel like I'm trying to read a foreign language where I some of the words look vaguely familiar but the meaning is still indicipherable.

Mystifiedly befogged in California,
Tim

Gobsmacked! One of my favorite words! You made my day just a little bit brighter.

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About John McIntyre
John McIntyre, mild-mannered editor for a great metropolitan newspaper, has fussed over writers’ work, to sporadic expressions of gratitude, for thirty years. He is The Sun’s night content production manager and former head of its copy desk. He also teaches editing at Loyola University Maryland. A former president of the American Copy Editors Society, a native of Kentucky, a graduate of Michigan State and Syracuse, and a moderate prescriptivist, he writes about language, journalism, and arbitrarily chosen topics. If you are inspired by a spirit of contradiction, comment on the posts or write to him at john.mcintyre@baltsun.com.
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