Date: Tue, 20 Jan 1998 19:17:51 -0500 From: Grant Barrett Subject: RE>Re: New York vowels From: Donald M. Lance > The University of Missouri boasts of the first (true) and best (I really > don't know) school of journalism in the world. MU J-students > systematically avoid both linguistics and cliches like the plague. So the > Metro Gnome who wrote the cutsie NYPost piece on New Yawk vowels is in good > company. That's sarcasm, right, Donald? As a former University of Missouri-Columbia journalism student, I feel confident in saying that MU journalism students love cliches and other worn writing devices like they love their mothers. Things always "spark" in headlines (I'm waiting for the headline "Satan Sparks Armageddon"). "Debates are always "raised." Durn near every story has the word "issue", "debate" or "controversy" in it, as if readers needed to be cued into the multiple sides to the issue. No MU journalism student ever met a third-person story he or she wouldn't rather write in the first person. My favorite thing they do in the University of Missouri-Columbia journalism school is convince each crop of 20 some-odd year-olds that they have anything to say the rest of the world would care one whit to read. Naturally, the kids buy into this, because they are certain they would make a good columnist, a great columnist, and if Andy Rooney can measure shrinkage in canned coffee on national television, then they can write about the common trauma they had when their alarm clocks broke and they were late for class. There are various caveats that lead me to these points of view, but I'll just close by saying: I stopped being a small-time journalist a few years ago because I didn't like the company I was keeping. Now I go to the track and hang out on the docks and sleep a little better at night. Grant Barrett gbarrett[AT SYMBOL GOES HERE] Not sarcastic, just emotionally resourceful