Archive for the ‘Fun With Structural Ambiguity’ Category


Fun fact about The Masked Linguist and some more Fun with Structural Ambiguity

December 26, 2008

When the Masked Linguist is stressed, she becomes somewhat pedantic. A little error becomes a nagging thing. Today the bathroom at her workplace (because she has to have a mild-mannered secret identity, though in fact not one so mild-mannered) had a sign instructing people not to close the main door because “the handle is broke.”

This nagged, as despite the fact that The Mysterious Masked Linguist will defend language against over-zealous Prescriptivism, the workplace is one of the places where “Proper English” is supposed to prevail for the sense of professionalism.

Unable to let it slide, she grabbed a black sharpie from a coworkers desk and scrawled an “n” onto the sign. And now she can sit at her desk comfortably, knowing the error has been corrected.

And now for More Fun With Structural Ambiguity

From the 12/18/08 horoscope out of my local free paper
Capricorn: No one has the consistency and endurance required to handle tough situations like you.

Also, headline seen on online site:
Crew injured as speed yacht flips off France


Language ambiguity is still fun

September 24, 2008

Headline seen briefly on before I went to Lunch:

Anger and skepticism in Congress dog bailout

We’re bailing dogs out now too?


Structural Ambiguity – Frequently amusing

June 14, 2008

Actual news article headline:
Detective makes promise to rape victim, tracks man for 10 years

First Fark Comment:
“Well? Did he finally rape him or what?”

The article headline was eventually fixed.


Fun with ambiguity

November 17, 2006

There was a headline in one of the papers today:

Plan for big mercury cuts advances.

So, naturally this reads 2 ways. Either the plan for substantial mercury cuts is advancing, or the plan is cutting substantial mercury advances (monetary or somesuch).

Me though, my first thought on glancing the headline was “I didn’t know there was a lobby big enough to be called Big Mercury.” Really, this lead me to the less likely second reading, but still. It amused me.

Also, why aren’t these shirts available in something better quality than Cafe Press shirts? Maybe their quality improved since the last time I saw one of their shirts, but damnit, I want a Wug shirt. I kinda want the Liquids Only mug as well.