Letters From the Editor

What the Onion Might Say

Editors Vow to Find Synonym for ‘Pound’ NEW YORK, U.S.A. (The Morning News) – Editors from top news agencies met Tuesday in order to find alternatives for the popular word ‘pound.’ The word has been making frequent appearances in recent headlines and is feared to lose currency through over-exposure. ‘We are investigating several replacement options,’ said New York Times Executive Editor Howell Raines. ‘Make no mistake: We will smoke out any alternatives.’ Reuters Editor Thomas White said the verbs ‘smack,’ ‘hit,’ and ‘boink,’ are all being detained for consideration. L.A. Times reporter Jennifer Lawas fears that pound is beginning to lose its metaphoric impact. ‘Two weeks ago it had weight. You heard pound and thought, ‘Damn, those guys are receiving a lot of pressure.’ But now it’s tired; it’s old. Personally, I’m going with ‘H-bomb’ or ‘totally bust up.’ However, not all editors are convinced. Daily News Metro Editor Stan Knotts led a protest outside the press conference. ‘People understand ‘pound,’ said Knotts, ‘It’s an in-your-face, balls-out, kick-ass word. It means those Afghan military targets are being totally destroyed, and there’s the whole secondary, homophobic connotation.’ Picketers held up signs saying ‘Pound: Love It or Leave It’ and ‘Strike’s Primary Cultural Meaning is to Undertake a Strike Against an Employer, not to Hit Sharply, as with the Hand!’ Roget’s Thesaurus Editor Shawna Burke spoke after Raines, announcing a new upgrade to the popular thesaurus, featuring an expanded section on ‘pound.’ ‘We have some new synonyms to release,’ said Burke. ‘You can expect to see more in our popular Pulverization line. More along the lines of ‘triturate’ and ‘bray.’’
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Rosecrans Baldwin co-founded TMN with publisher Andrew Womack in 1999. He is the author of three books, including his latest novel The Last Kid Left (NPR’s Best Books of the Year). His nonfiction appears in a variety of magazines, mostly GQ. More information can be found at rosecransbaldwin.com. More by Rosecrans Baldwin

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