I have just returned from seeing M. Night Shyamalan’s “The Happening,” which even he has recently declared to be a pretty good B-movie. That’s about right. It was a popcorn flick — as long as watching gory death scenes doesn’t ruin your appetite.
I’m ruining basically nothing by saying that one of the signs of BAD in the movie is when people begin to be confused. So I came home, and as part of winding down for the evening, popped up the New York Times. I found the following two headlines on the front page:
And for just a second, I thought maybe I was having a happening of my own, here. I think what’s actually wrong in both headlines is that the hyphen isn’t attached to the words, so it’s functioning like an em-dash (emdash? is that just a Microsoft word now?), and I’m reading it like a colon in the first one: Japanese Athletes Begin Chopstick. Less “Food Camp.” That makes no sense. (The story is about Japanese athletes training for the Olympics in China by bringing on board Chinese chefs and abandoning their own usual foods).
Worse, though, is the second, where I wonder if there’s been violence against or perpetrated by gays, or by their headlines, or… I have no idea. Throats are being cut!! Headlines are bad!! Help help help it’s happening!!!!
That one is cleared up by knowing that it’s about Tyson Gay, a runner who will be on the big stage (metaphor) here in Eugene in a few days.
But still. I didn’t really need to come home and have the New York Times (via Reuters) make me crazy. That’s what I pay six bucks for at the theater.