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Moving on

Today You Don’t Say relocates to a new Web address and new software. You will be able to find it at http://www.baltimoresun.com/news/language-blog/, where the first post, “Dunce English,” is already up.

Though no further posts are contemplated at this address, it will remain open, available for you to read previous posts and also to comment.

I hope to see all of you at the new address.

 

Posted by John McIntyre at 2:11 PM | | Comments (5)
        

Comments


What the $#%^&*@#$%!!!!!!!

Mercy! Mercy!

John, I truly hate to be a Debbie Downer* here, on this one, but frankly this 'new' format is, at least at first blush, so user-unfriendly, and IMHO a major step backwards in on-line social intercourse. (Are you blushing?)

The beauty and ease of your earlier, original tried-and-true format/ page layout was that it was seemingly so intuitively designed for online access and lively discussion, w/ the 'viewer' being able to simply scroll down the page of a litany of your recently posted articles, and immediately having the option to click on to say a particular "Comments" icon, or check out a specific article that tickled their fancy, and go on from there.

Also the "Recent Comments'** sidebar box gave one a heads-up 'teaste' of the most timely postings, which greatly enhanced and simplified the blogging experience, in my view. (If you saw the name of a particular blogger you especially enjoyed regularly following, right away you could connect w/ the speed of a mouse click.)

Now with this 'new' format, I see that all your previously posted articles have "O" (zero) comments, (as of today), as if you are completely starting over from scratch. (I am well aware that we can revisit the old site, if we wish to check out earlier commentaries, but why can't those comments be posted w/ their appropriate articles in this new format, as well? Very weird.)

For me, as i see it, there are just too many competing visual elements swirling around your home page, and accordingly, I find it difficult to actually home-in on just the "You Don't Say" blog content. (I guess that's the intent of those wily marketers at The Sun, no?)

Also, just giving us a smidgen of your article, and then having to click on "Read on" is frankly a pain in the ass. Is the Sun actually running low on available cyberspace, for Gods sake? (Something tells me all this new-formating is a not-so- veiled attempt to push more on-line advertising. Am I being too cynical here?)

Whoever, in that passel of marketing, formating geniuses at The Sun came up w/ this hodge-podgy, cluttered, visually mediocre, user-unfriendly format should be tarred-and-feathered. (I was thinking drawn-and-quartered, but that's a tad extreme.)

John, I'm really going to give it the old college try, for a bit, but if things become just too tiresome and annoying, I'm afeared I'll be looking for greener, less muddied pastures beyond.

Hate to be so negative, right out of the box, so to speak. But this is my gut feel re/ this latest redo of your blog, and I had to speak up.

What say you other regulars? (Am I blowin' premature smoke, here?)

Come what may, I wish you all the best, John.***

*The fictive Debbie Downer is a popular satiric SNL character , who when group conversation seems to be going on an even, or upbeat keel, Debbie invariably horns in w/ some tragic news, like for instance she crushed her pet parakeet in the car door; bring the ensuing conversational tone progressively down...... down...... and downer.

**Noticed there was no "Recent Comments" sidebar segment in the 'new' page layout. Bummer.

***You, sadly, are but a mere pawn in this journalistic folly that upper management continues to play. I guess desperate times, call for desperate measures.

ALEX


Oops!

My nitpicky alter ego had to point out that I unwittingly typed "teaste" rather than my intended "tease", in the third paragraph of my last post. One too many 't"s thrown into the mix, as it were.

While we're at it., the word "bring" needs an additional "ing", i.e., bringing, towards the end of my first footnote.

I'm off to do my penance now.

ALEX

I used to stop by here in the old days, when I was just a kid. The guy who owned it kept a room for me on the third story. Just passed by the other day and found the door open. The place is empty. No one lives here now. I dumped my stuff in my old room and took a look around. Memories and stuff. Old papers. Things belonging to people I'd almost forgotten.

I went out for some whisky. When I came back the door still pushed open easy; there was no-one in the hall. But something was different. Someone had been before me. Someone's feet had left small damp patches on the boards. I went back into my room and locked the door.

Since then I've seen him, coming into the house every day, checking the locks, turning a couple of lights on in the evening, cleaning out the spam from the comments. Come warm weather, he'll have to cut the grass every few weeks. It's kind of eerie, you know, him creeping through the place, all those posts silent now, and abandoned. I think he thinks no-one goes here any more.


Picky,

A little birdie told me I might find you here. (Funny little feathered creature was wearing a bow-tie, black specs, suspenders, and a wee straw boater.)

But in all seriousness, I must offer kudos for your brilliant, all be it slightly sad and creepy post----a splendidly riveting, compact little narrative that for me seamlessly dovetails into our esteemed blogmeister's earlier parting metaphorical musings on his reluctantly closing the door on the old, familiar "You Don't Say" address, and moving on to the new, unfamiliar, and somewhat alien new web domain.

From my perspective you could have been channeling T.S. Elliot at his spiritual low-ebb in your melancholic, nostalgia-tinged post, creating a palpable sense of dreamlike ennui, and lingering sadness, w/ just enough of that door jamb left askew to possibly accommodate a glimmer of hopefulness going forward.

Thanks Picky, my friend. To me, that was both a selfless gift of prose to ponder, and a bitter pill to swallow. Perhaps a bit of a wake-up call, as well.

Ta! Ta! for now,

ALEX

I just read at the Washington Post a quote attributed to you--After all, “English was created by barbarians, by a rabble of angry peasants,” McIntyre says. “Because if it wasn’t, we would still be speaking Anglo-Saxon.”

However, Anglo-Saxon IS English! Its other name is ... "Old English." It is the language, not of angry peasants, but of the Anglo-Saxon invaders of Britain, and all the earliest English literature, like Beowulf, is written in it.

Again: Anglo-Saxon IS English.

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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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