Category Archives: Get off my lawn!

The power of the web for targeted marketing

by Greg Mayer One of the creepiest things about using the internet is how many businesses seem to know where you’ve been on the web and what you did there, and on that basis insert ads on other web pages you view. This ability to precisely target particular subsets of people for advertising is, indeed, […]

An insulting misuse of quotation marks

I spotted this sign in one of the fancy-schmancy stores that sell arts and crafts around the perimeter of the old Plaza of Santa Fe: Why the scare quotes around “artisans”? Are they not real artisans but faux artisans or artisans manqué? And wouldn’t they be insulted to find the denigrating quotation marks around their status? There’s […]

Airport water fountains

I needed a drink of water in the Houston (Hobby) airport, and one good thing about America compared to, say, Europe, is that water fountains are nearly always handy in public facilities. Seeking my drink, I found this: Now usually there are two levels: low to the ground for kids and higher up for adults. […]

I was right: the NYT is going SJW

Reader Eli Vilker sent me the link to Joe Pompeo’s new article in Vanity Fair, which you can get by clicking on the screenshot below.  And Eli added these words with his email: This is an excellent riposte to people who always argue about regressive Leftists on campus as “just kids who’ll grow out of […]

Misfortune in the grocery store

This has happened to me twice in the last week. When it first occurred, I wrote about it on Facebook, with mixed comments, and then it happened again this morning. I had to pick up some produce, which included just a small amount: a wee bag of radishes (try them the French way: sliced on […]

The Olympics are over at last

I usually watch at least some of the Olympics, both winter and summer games, but this year my interest flagged. I’m not sure whether it was me, the jingoism that pervaded the coverage, with endless charts showing who had the most medals; the overuse of the verb “medaled”, which is a real verb according to […]

A bar worth frequenting

It’s the dive bar Continental in the East Village of New York, and it has a new policy, stated in the window. The owner says it’s not that serious: he won’t literally throw people out if they use the l-word. But he’s a language maven: The notice has been hanging there for five or six […]

Words that should be deep-sixed

Grania found this tw**t, which I think is right on the mark: Updated my list of words/phrases that need destroying. BaeHolibobsChillaxTotesAmazeballsCray crayBanter/BantzFamNom nomWine o'clockYoloLolzWell jel CoolioAwksMethinksGawjusHunTellyboxHubs/Hubby/HubsterStaycationBe likeWhevsI know rightPreggersEpic — Amanda (@Pandamoanimum) January 17, 2018 The words I especially hate here are “bae”, “totes”, “amazeballs”, “cray cray”, “whatevs”, “be like” and “epic”. Some of them, […]

There is no monolithic “Twitter” that makes pronouncements

This is happening not just at the much reviled (and, I suspect, cash bleeding) HuffPo, but on many other pop news sites as well. “Twitter does this” or “Twitter says that”, the sites proclaim. Here’s one example from the site I love to hate (click on screenshot to see it):Some points: 1.) There is no […]

Three beefs

I believe the correct term for the plural of beef is actually “beeves”, but if I put it above nobody would read this.  Anyway, Jerry Has Three Beeves (a good title for a children’s book). 1.)  Toothpaste prices.  One of the biggest ripoffs you can experience in American merchandising, besides bottled water and Starbuck’s Fancy […]