I noticed this story a little while back and it made me smile. It’s like John Major sacking one of his cabinet members for screwing around (or the Independent having a go at the Guardian for printing the views of an extremist): Oasis fire Pete Doherty for lack of work ethic. Those “working class” Gallagher lads could have conquered America, honest. They just had to pop down to IKEA to get some stuff for the new gaff, then er, well after a Sunday roast you wanna nap, don’t yer? Then, the next time they tried, they, er, had a bit of a mash-up on the road, like.
One compensation for the pain of watching distinctions in English decay is that new kinds of poetic ambiguity become possible. K T Tunstall should be singing about someone being on the other side of the world from her, instead she sings “You’re the Other Side Of The World [To Me]” and gains another possible interpretation. By contrast, The Economist this week carries a piece about the threat of Islamist terrorist attacks in Italy. Its headline is:
“The next target?”
Underneath this is the grammatically sound subheading:
“Terrorism is ‘knocking at Italy’s door’, says the interior minister. Most Italians need no persuading”
This is one of those occasions where the not-so-correct
“Most Italians need no convincing“
would have left the reader with a less ambiguous impression, or one closer to the author’s intent at least.
Another piece of chart song wordplay that pleases me currently is the refrain of Rooster‘s latest:
“You still walked away leaving me in this mess
My love for you is deep and meaningless”
Sadly the song Deep And Meaningless sounds eerily like an easy-to-play clone of an Aerosmith power ballad, as if the boys had been down to the local music shop and bought “Tyler and Perry in A Day” back to the studio with them. Still. Can’t complain. At least it’s not a cut from the imminent Crazy Frog album.
In related news, lately Bono has been singing this lyric:
“Oh you look so beautiful tonight
In the city of blinding lights”
In other words:
“Oi can’t see feck all roight now, Alison, but yer gorgeous.”