More language stuff that bugs me:
• Coffee shops helpers routinely ask: “What can I get started for ya?”
First: I don’t want you to START anything for me. I want you to actually finish.
Give me the thing fully completed.
Second: “...for ya” has now become ubiquitous. No kidding: If you start listening for it, you’ll hear it everywhere. “OK, that’ll be $2.12 for ya.” “I’ll bring that right out for ya.” “I think I can find that in a size 11 for ya.”
I don’t actually mind it being used at the end of the “What can I get for ya?” question at the coffee shop.
I just mind that it’s everywhere, all the time now. You know, if you’re talking to me, you don’t need to tell me that you’re doing whatever it is FOR ME. I can take that for granted, since I’m the one you’re talking to.
• Malarkey. The cops recently trotted out a new tank, bought with money seized from dope dealers.
The tank — OK, it’s actually not a tank, it’s a “Bearcat,” which is technically an “armored vehicle” — is supposed to be defensive in nature.
Nobody wants to see a cop get hurt, so we’re down with that. The turret, where a tank gunner would stand, is supposed to be used for a cop to stand there and talk to somebody.
The cops, in defending the $300,000 purchase, claimed that it really was all about “communication.”
They said that it was to allow police to communicate with somebody in a standoff.
A tank is about “communication”?
No. A tank is about power. Maybe the projection of power will persuade some nutjob or dimwit that he can’t shoot his way out, so he’ll knuckle under. But it’s not like somebody is going to start tearfully blathering his life’s woes to a guy in the gun turret.
• The Stampede Formerly Known as Country.
I can’t bring myself to call it the “Heartland St..” See? Can’t do it. It’s the Country Stampede, and it always was, and it always will be, and they can just lump it.
• “WTDD”: So, yeah, about “Win the Dang Day.” I loved it as the viral cornball intro to Chris Klieman. Guerilla marketing, I guess it was.
I was able to tolerate a few T-shirt designs, even.
But it’s wearing thin. Seeing it routinely on a billboard beside I-70 in Topeka is part of the problem.
I realize that I’m risking being the guy who announces that the Emperor has no clothes, but, hey, I’m the curmudgeon here.
Seaton is Mercury publisher and editor in chief.