Saturday, November 2, 2013

You never go full listicle

Last year, Albert Burneko posted a 1,873-word essay all about Halloween candy.  Near the end, he gave a ranking of the eight best Halloween candies, with a description of each food.  (He also fast-forwarded to the 72nd- and 73rd-best choices:  A wadded Party City receipt and a Hershey bar.)

This year, Albert again posted about Halloween candy.  But since he had nothing new to say, he went the listicle route: 47 Halloween candies, ranked 1 through 47.  Total word count:  158.      

If you ever wanted to see a clear example of "perfunctory writing," this was it.

Although maybe I'm missing the bigger picture.  Maybe Albert was paying homage to that new "Buzzfeed minus gifs" tumblr by writing a Buzzfeed article without any gifs.

Friday, November 1, 2013

Reports of multiple errors

Barry Petchesky over at Deadspin wrote an article about the rowdy behavior in Boston following the World Series.  He said conditions that night created a "perfect storm," because, I guess, the Red Sox took an early lead in the game.

This "perfect storm" resulted in 9 people getting arrested for unruly behavior, although there were no major injuries reported.  However, multiple vehicles were flipped over!  Barry wrote:          
"Cars were flipped, because that's what you apparently do when your team wins a World Series. Here's a frightening one, just outside of Fenway, with the poor driver still inside"
He then embedded this YouTube video of a car being flipped.

Next, he added:
"And here's another, location undetermined (though reports indicate that most of the property damage took place around Fenway and Kenmore Square, then moving up Boylston toward Copley)"
And he embedded this other video of a car being flipped.

If you play both videos, you'll hear the cars making a similar crunching sound when they topple over. Both cars are black.  And if you pause the videos at the right moments, you'll see both cars have the same license plate: 281 LX2.

It's the same goddamn car!  These weren't separate incidents.  Did this guy not bother watching the videos that he himself posted?

Barry also said the driver of the first car was inside when it got upturned.  That sounds like an important detail, and something which other news reports would've mentioned.  But the owner of the car, Chad Duncan, was asleep when the incident occurred.  Additional news reports make no mention of a person being inside the car.

A hat tip goes to commenter "smrtsmrt," who pointed all of this out in the comments section. Naturally, his comment is still buried in the "not yet approved" area.