Tuesday, January 6, 2009

In Which A Contest Is Announced

I must say, I find the response to this nascent bloglet totally gratifying. It's been very well received. By which I mean that several people I already email all the time emailed me and told me they read it. Thanks, folks! And a hearty thank-you especially to Adams Gaffin and Reilly.

Several correspondents made sarcastic remarks about what might be the next entry in the Globe's 23,987-part series, "Women And The Things They Do." Their prospects were hilariously outrageous. But then again, so was that bowling story. I wouldn't put it past some newspaper somewhere to have actually written these stories. And so, the contest is this, O Readers: Find a story in any newspaper anywhere that has done these stories, or reasonably similar ones, and you will receive...

Hmm. There's a dilemma. As of yesterday, I had $5 of free tacos to give away. Oh yes, that very same $5. In El Pelon Bucks. It's been moldering in my desk since the Dig's flaky former business manager paid it to me, one day when they ran out of petty cash to give to stray freelancers. But it seems that El Pelon has just burned to the ground. So if you win, you'll have to be content with that smugness which, like virtue, is its own reward.

For Fictional Story #1, which informs us that women sometimes drive buses, our correspondent has kindly supplied the headline:
Women at the Wheel
Bus driving has long been a man's world, but that's starting to change

For Fictional Story #2, which concerns women and their big dogs, you have a lede to get you started:
"Mary is only 96 pounds and a meager 5'2". She seems delicate, tiny, when she walks her great dane, Bobo, around Hyde Park. But Mary, like a rising number of women today, are opting for dogs of beast-like proportions rather than the ankle-biters sported by Paris Hilton."

Are these stories too vacantly patronizing to exist? Is anything? I once thought I'd seen the most drivellous pap the news industry had to offer. And then I read about Mommy Dating.


  1. From the New York Times, no less:

    WOMEN WITH BIG DOGS IN WEST MINSTER'S SHOW; Fair Owners Comprise Nearly a Fourth of the Exhibitors. GIANT CANINES THEIR FANCY Miss Whitney Will Have Excellent Display of Great Danes -- Show's Big Increase in Entries.

    OK, granted, the New York Times from Feb. 3, 1907, but some trends never go out of fashion, I guess.

  2. My God, that was fast. I'll have to raise the bar next time! So glad to know newspapers haven't changed much in 102 years.

  3. Does Trucking count?

    "A silent minority takes the wheel"
    South Asians dominate trucking, but few talk about the rare women, like Balwinder Gill, who haul loads for a living


  4. Good enough for government work. I thought for sure it would take folks at least a couple hours to find BOTH stories. Gold stars for both of you. And clearly, there is much work to be done.

  5. Are there any articles about women who stage contests to give away gift certificates to burrito places that just burned down? If not, any editors reading should contact me for a hot scoop!

  6. Those gift certificates might be precious collectibles now. What about a pool to give them away? People could try to predict the Globe's next "women do" story. My guess: "In today's economy, men aren't the only ones filing for bankruptcy."

  7. Perhaps I've underestimated the collectibility of El Pelon Bucks in a post-El Pelon economy. I will certainly think this over.