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Nobody cares but me

Trolling on ESPN to find that the Cubs don't play again until tomorrow, I come across the following headline:

"Navratilova loses first singles match in decade"

I know that this is nitpicky and anal and simply identifies me as one of those geeks who falls square into the worst stereotypes of English teachers, but I can't help but observe that this headline could mean two different things: Martina played in her first singles match in a decade, and lost (this is what it actually means); or, that she's been playing tennis and hasn't lost for at least ten years. It's either a headline about a comeback or one about total dominance.

I'm completely aware that I'm opening myself up to all sorts of ridicule by admitting this, but it's an unfortunate fact that I notice bad writing, almost by reflex, and I care more about it than is probably healthy for my own publishing aspirations.

You may commence mockery.....now.


Oh, I care.

I'm definitely not qualified to say but could the headline mean that Navratilova played in the first singles match (played anywhere, one might assume) in a ten year span (both the reader and writer have apparently agree upon the exact ten year span prior to us coming along), but that she lost.

I'm with you on the noticing poor use of language ( except my own, of course). NPR makes me cringe at least once a day with their strange words choices, and annoying repition. ( count how many times they say "today" in a given news update, now that's annoying.)

I should write a style guide. That would fix everything.

I don't have any good mockery in me right now. I'll check back when I restock. I do have some slightly stale whimsy I could unleash if you're desparate

Oh, I'm not *that* desperate...

Good to hear from you. Madeline was sitting in my office when I first saw your comment, and she says hi too. Hope you're doing well...


I didn't realize Madeline was up there. I'm green (#00FF00)with envy. I hope she's doing pretty well, but suffering a bit due to unfavorable weather as payback for actually doing what I should be doing. I suppose I should confess I've been e-stalking you ever since you left. I mean you no harm: I'm simply trying to relive my glory days as someone involved, if ever so slighty, in academia. Keep up the good work on your blog. Give Madeline a hug and a nice punch in the arm for me. Tell her I said "hi" back after her eyes stop tearing up.