Friday, August 22, 2008

What Demon From Hell Hath Brought These Monsters Upon Us? Oh, Yeah, It Was Lynne Truss

This just in:

Two guys have been sentenced to a fine and probation after correcting apostrophes on a historic sign. When asked why, during their multi-state sign-editing spree, they didn't also change the word "emense" to "immense" on the 1930s-era Grand Canyon sign, one remarked: "I was reluctant to disfigure the sign any further."

It's good to see their cross-country rampage was tempered by calm restraint and sound judgment.

Here's the whole story:

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Joel said...

I remember the original story on NPR, yea so long ago and being somewhat amused. Even now, there is much to laugh at and about and I can't claim to be entirely without empathy; there's a ton of stupid signage out there and I'm not sure it's the worst thing in the world for someone(s) to mess with it. I mean, c'mon, we correct and mock each other all of the time. It's part of what makes being human fun. It can also be a pretty good way to be an asshole, so true. It's a fine line I guess.

These guys clearly crossed a line, but I hear genuine remorse, circumspection and maybe even "what the hell where we thinking?" And I know how easy it can be to get carried away and maybe, actually, sometimes someone does need to get carried away, um, even if it means they end up getting hauled off. The sentence (ha, "sentence") seems fair and, if you're going to engage in civil disobedience, to me, it's a little less authentic if you're not ultimately willing to do the time.

Kudos to them. For being human. For getting caught. For owning their actions. I'm curious to see what happens after they finish their probation.

Yeah, I've probably been way too into movies like "Wanted" and "V for Vendetta" and such lately. I'm feeling such the urge to anarchy. I just want to shout, at the top of my lungs, "SHENANIGANS!!!" but I'm pretty sure no one would know what I meant.

Hmmm, the irony is that this "anarchy" was all in the name of propriety and rectitude. All the richer I say. Not that I advocate the defacing of historical monuments, at least not most of the time--and, in fact, definitely not this time. But still.

Basking in the ambivalence of it all . . .

Unknown said...

Next up, our Appalling Apostrophizers visit the National Archives and the Declaration of Independence: "This is unconscionable! I can't believe they misspelled British as Brittish! And any idiot knows that you must capitalize United in United States. And hey, Founding Fatheads, we don't spell it Congrefs anymore—get a dictionary! Time to get out the red pen! . . . huh? What's Nicolas Cage doing here?"

--Bill Brohaugh

June Casagrande said...


Your post has been edited to remove the word "shenanigans." Just kidding. Never heard anyone say they wanted to shout that one out from the tallest buildings. I like it.


I believe congreff paffed lawf for the fpecific purpofe of ftopping clownf like thif. : )

Joel said...

"Shenanigans!" is an old South Park bit. I'm not a regular viewer but there are pieces that strike me as brilliant.

June Casagrande said...

I managed not to say so this morning but can't resist a second time: Reminds me of a Simpsons episode (most things animal, vegetable, mineral, and conceptual do) in which the family is standing in front of a cineplex. One of the movie selections on the marquee (for those quick enough to spot 'em or lame enough to record 'em) is "Shenanigoats."

Not a likely Oscar recipient.


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