Weapon of choice

NBC Miami published a dramatic story last week about a “botched robbery attempt”. As you can see, the robbery isn’t the only thing that was botched:

The story attracted nine comments, all of them about the strange headline (which is of a type known as a crash blossom). For example:

I must know, where did that robber find a kitchen knife gun?!

Was Groucho Marx involved in the creation of this headline?

I had to join up just to comment on the headline. […] Please tell me where I can find one of these weapons! Where is your editor?

The headline was soon fixed:

Judging by the figures in the right-hand column, this made the locals more amused, bored, and sad; and less furious, thrilled, and intrigued. I leave you to draw your own conclusions.

[more crash blossoms here, there, and elsewhere]

13 Responses to Weapon of choice

  1. Liam says:

    And whose dad was shot? The boy’s or the other man’s?

  2. Sean Jeating says:

    In a way, bursting out in laughter despite of what the headline is telling, respectively trying to tell, is comparable to reading that [s]ome birds can sense the Earth’s magnetic field and orientate themselves with the ease of a compass needle., and having nothing better to do than to let the author know ‘Orientate’ is not a word..
    As said: in a way.
    Now could a ‘scientist’ – and I can’t help thinking even real :) a scientist – come to the conclusion that at least 49% (43 + 6) of the (commenting) locals have no empathy. (And they, the ‘scientist’ and the scientest, both could even be right. Or wrong. 90% seems to getting closer to reality, hm?)
    However: I do prefer 45 per cent of the people laughing about a hilarious crash blossom to two per cent of humourless self-appointed
    Keepers of the(ir) Language Grail who are 100 per cent orientated toward knawvshawlingly picking nits.

    And: Who knows that those who are laughing about the headline at the same don’t feel anger/sadness/pity?
    Finally: Do we who are laughing about Buster Keaton, Charlie Chaplin etc. have a heart of stone?

    Oh well, there’s another phenomenon waiting for me: Red and black currants, JoSta (a crossbreed of Johannis- and Stachelbeere/red currant and gooseberry) and morello cherries ask to be picked at the same time.
    Thus, off I hurry.

  3. Sean Jeating says:

    Oops, and here’s the missing time.

  4. Michele says:

    Here are some comments about this from friends on Facebook:

    – Obviously, this was a double-barreled blade!

    – Those Ginsu knives are “amazing”…

    – Especially the ones with the silencers.

    – How the kitchen knife got in my pajamas, I’ll never know.

    – I read somewhre that the Swiss Army has outsourced their knife contract to Glock. The newest model, the “Hitman” features such accessories as a sub-compact “Baby” Glock 26, scope, night vision goggles and kitchen knife. The latter can be used to field-dress large game, but that’s irrelevant.

    – Plus, it can create Swiss cheese in three, short, fully automatic bursts!

    – Wait, there’s more! Two shells where none are needed and—close the breech, and the light! stays! ON!

  5. Stan says:

    Liam: Yes, that’s another ambiguity, though the truth is strongly implied by the context.

    Sean: I don’t know what to make of those numbers. It’s a curious kind of newspaper–reader interaction, but one to be taken with a large pinch of salt. If I had time, I might be tempted to conduct a quasi-statistical survey, but I don’t think it would tell us much about human empathy. Laughing at Keaton and Chaplin is the sign of a well-functioning heart, I think.

    Michele: Thank you! Some of those lines are zingers. I especially like the Swiss cheese quip.

  6. What I would give for a tool that cuts tomatoes while filling perps with lead!

  7. Tim says:

    I’d have been laughing too. What came to mind when I read the original headline was a shorter version of the gunblade from Final Fantasy VIII. >.<

    Nice catch, Stan. I always appreciate a botched headline. ;)

  8. Stan says:

    Jams: Ha ha! You should talk to Geena Davis about that. (Tomato trick after a minute, at 5.25.)

    a shorter version of the gunblade from Final Fantasy VIII

    Tim: I’ll take your word for it! I think having a little fun with botched headlines is a mild and acceptable form of Schadenfreude.

  9. Reminiscent of a line from a classic of British comedy – the parody of Macbeth from “I’m Sorry I’ll Read That Again“, broadcast 1968 according to my cassette tape copy:

    – “I have come to stab you. Take that!”
    – [gunshot noise]
    – “I was right: it wasn’t a dagger.”

  10. Stan says:

    Dragon: Very reminiscent! Thank you. I haven’t heard the show you refer to, but thanks to your transcription I feel as though I’ve heard the relevant portion.

  11. Stan says:

    Thanks, Ben! At this rate we’ll soon have to update the saying, “he’s not the sharpest knife in the drawer” to “his knife isn’t fully loaded”.

  12. Sean Jeating says:

    Ha ha ha … at the latest two (above).

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