I just finished my annual year-end inbox cleanup, and wow, was I irritated to discover how much “legal spam” there was. You know the stuff I mean—commercial e-mail from organizations I’ve done business with, but that I really never wanted. There were thousands and thousands of messages, literally: nearly 70 percent of the 7000+ messages I received that didn’t end up in Gmail’s Spam Folder before I even saw them.
Resolved: next year I’m going to be a lot more aggressive about unsubscribing from most things and deleting everything else after a quick look-see. If you’re sending me e-mail I didn’t explicitly opt in to, you’d better be sending me cash—a lot of cash—or your message is history.
On the prospect of eating crawfish:
Remedial instruction in tying shoes from Put This On:
Yes, I have apparently been tying my shoes wrong for the last 40 years or so.
But no longer!
Several times in the last few days, I’ve seen writers confusing these two words. It’s starting to annoy me, so I’m going to complain about it, because I can.
The mistake that set me off this morning was someone writing that a magazine article "wreaked" of a conspiracy theory.
No it didn’t. If anything, it reeked of a conspiracy theory.
To wreak is to inflict or cause, and you don’t wreak of something. A rampaging horde might wreak havoc on the enemy. Ill-conceived economic policy might wreak havoc on the economy. Havoc does seem to be the popular thing to wreak, and wreak has generally negative connotations overall. Hardly anyone talks about wreaking happiness. A shame, really.
To reek is to emit or exude something, such as an unpleasant odor. A dumpster might reek of garbage, for example. In fact, I daresay most do.
Come on people, get it right—don’t make me come over there!
“Your inability to see your own bad argument does not mean there are flaws in my logic when I point them out to you.” —John Scalzi via Twitter