Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Diabolical Robots = Less Suck.

I've read enough dialogue in Global Watch to make the following pronouncement:
The characters in Global Watch speak like robots.
That got me thinking.


Turning the Global Watch characters into robots makes the story make sense.
This leads to my suggestion for the person who typed in Global Watch: Rewrite the ending so that it is revealed that all the characters were actually robots.

Global Watch, you should be paying me for this blog.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Maryland.


It's almost as though Global Watch REALLY wants to abbreviate "Maryland." Step one: Postal abbreviation. Step two: Period.

This is like saying, "Dr. Jones, MD," but much more dumb and lazy.

Monday, September 28, 2009

Somebody's got issues.

Any paragraph that begins with the phrase "pink snow warrior" is crying for attention.


Laziness. That's all I have to say about the two errors circled above. If the person who typed in Global Watch meant "arctic" instead of "artic," then why the heck is this goddess in the Alps, where this scene takes place? I know I keep saying it, but Global Watch doesn't know the meaning of the words he's using. And that's the shame here.

P.S. Does anybody else get a creepy vibe from this scene?

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Council Grove

If I were a "proud citizen" of Council Grove, I would be insulted by Global Watch.



First, the person who typed in Global Watch misspelled the name of the town. Twice. Council "Gove," Global Watch?

Second, like Global Watch's belief that the Appalachian Mountains are in Switzerland, this section also suffers from poor knowledge of geography. I went to Google Maps to find out about Council Grove on my own. Here's what I found.


There's Council Grove, alright. Now look closely at the highways. Where is "highway 355"? Maybe "highway 355" is in Switzerland, too.

How many more errors are there in this one brief sample? Well, let's see.

At first, I thought that "Highway" should be capitalized. As in, "Highway 70 or 335." If that's what their names are, then they should be capitalized. But that isn't their name. They're Interstates. So, calling them "Interstate 70" and "Interstate 335" would have been correct.
The construction about Council Grove "hitting" said highways is awkward. If anything, the two roads would be doing the hitting. Get your idioms right, Global Watch.
The phrase "populated by migration from the railroad" is also badly worded. Were people migrating from the railroad? I don't understand.

I'm just going to put it bluntly: Global Watch is crap.

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Be vewwy vewwy "quite." I'm hunting for ewwors.

I've already referenced one example of this error here.



I have yet to find one page that does not have at least two errors on it.

The person who typed in Global Watch is working on a sequel. I think it's time for an intervention.

Friday, September 25, 2009

Read the Constitution, Global Watch!

After all is said and done, and the republic still stands, Global Watch posits this as the condition of the United States government.


And with that, any iota of willful suspension of disbelief I had crumbled away to nothingness. Why? Because I had civics class when I was 12.

In Global Watch, the Constitutional order of succession gets ignored so that the dead President's wife and secretary can run things and restore order. This must be the way of things because the "Senate and Congress" decided it was too dangerous to have any of the evil President's people in power.

Guess what, Global Watch. The Constitution already provides for that. After the Vice President, the next two in line for the presidency are the...
Speaker of the House of Representatives
and
the President pro tempore of the Senate.

So you see, Global Watch, keeping the order of succession in place would still have kept the President's cabinet from gaining the presidency.

Finally, do you really think the Speaker of the House would willingly turn down the office of the presidency by voting to allow the former President's wife and secretary to run the country? Or don't you know what "unanimous" means? Ugh. I bet you don't. You probably meant to type "anonymously," and screwed that up, too.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Remind you of anyone?

From George Orwell's Politics and the English Language
As I have tried to show, modern writing at its worst does not consist in picking out words for the sake of their meaning and inventing images in order to make the meaning clearer. It consists in gumming together long strips of words which have already been set in order by someone else, and making the results presentable by sheer humbug. The attraction of this way of writing is that it is easy.


When one watches some tired hack on the platform mechanically repeating the familiar phrases -- bestial atrocities, iron heel, bloodstained tyranny, free peoples of the world, stand shoulder to shoulder -- one often has a curious feeling that one is not watching a live human being but some kind of dummy: a feeling which suddenly becomes stronger at moments when the light catches the speaker's spectacles and turns them into blank discs which seem to have no eyes behind them.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Enemy Mine

The semicolon is a tricky little bit of punctuation when one writes fiction. Like adding a harmonica to your band, if it's not done well, the result is putrid. Faulkner could pull off the semicolon.



Global Watch, on the other hand, can not. Anybody who thinks colons and semicolons are interchangeable and who doesn't know that plural nouns don't take apostrophes ("sub's") shouldn't be messing with semicolons. As I said: putrid.

And even after that, we see another "then/than" error. Also, I circled "thing" because Kyp is a person. He is not a thing. Think before typing those words in your head, Global Watch.

"What's the big red box for?" you ask. Well, that big red box cordons off one of the most spectacularly horrible pieces of melodramatic prose in the entire story. Read this part out loud to yourself. "The battle lines would be drawn and he would have to face Kyp Sanders, president of the student government." All that's missing is a flagpole and some varsity jackets, and you almost have a scene the late John Hughes would have used as toilet paper.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Self-diagnosis

I figured out what bugs me about yesterday's excerpt of Global Watch: it has absolutely no connection with the rest of the book. Imagine you're watching John Wayne's Vietnam War classic "The Green Berets" (I can hear you singing now: "Fighting soldiers from the sky...Fearless men...who jump and die!") and right in the goshdarn middle of the movie, they insert a scene from "Born on the Fourth of July."
That's kind of what happens here.
We start out Global Watch with that amateurish fight scene, in which Rachel beats up three of our nation's finest soldiers.


Then, as described yesterday, we see how such Rachel-trained troops fare in battle:


Duuuude! Rachel teaches her students never to hesitate and never to listen to what the opponent has to say. And here we see Global Watch troops listening to what the opponent has to say, AND hesitating!

So, either Rachel is a really bad teacher, or her students are brain-damaged, or the person who typed in Global Watch couldn't keep track of the story he came up with and just made it up as he went along. I think you all know where I stand on this one.

Monday, September 21, 2009

"A Farewell to Arms" It Ain't.

Want to know how much Global Watch knows about arms and the man?
Read this section.


If Global Watch were a real novel, written by a real writer with real talent, the soldiers on both sides would have looked upon this scene with sadness and self-loathing. The author may have made a point about how when you go looking for revenge, you must first dig two graves. At the very least, there would have been religious symbolism slapping the reader in the face.

But, alas, this is Global Watch. The person who typed in Global Watch has these modern-day Hectors and Achilles run away from each other and vow to fight at some later date.

[Author's note: I've been sitting here for half an hour trying to finish the above paragraph with some literary reference or zinger. I can't. The stupidity of this scene has overwhelmed me. See you tomorrow.]

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Back to Russia, with Love

I'll set the scene for you. In the actual story, people are getting shot up all around them, and Mikhailov has just killed a guy. What better time to have a heart-to-heart history lesson?

Saturday, September 19, 2009

More Harvard hilarity

Now see here, Global Watch: Learn to punctuate.
Like so many other sections in Global Watch, the errors-to-words ratio would have E.B. White wanting to kick the spit out of you.



E.B. White was a nice, gentle man who wrote Charlotte's Web. He is also the "White" in Strunk and White's The Elements of Style.

And your attempts at writing would make him vomit in rage. Missing commas, poor use of quotation marks, the broken word "meantime." If he were alive, E.B. White would show you a "mean time."

Friday, September 18, 2009

The shortest post yet.

Here you go.


Here's a little help, Global Watch.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Curse you, Yale!

A-ha! An inconsistency!
"In Global Watch?" you say. "I doubt it. That book has been edited as though by monks."
Stay with me on this.

1. Max Park had his University of Michigan football dreams squelched by the omnipotent Global Watch, which had arranged for U of M to cancel his football scholarship. Said rejection leads Max to go to Harvard. (I know. Boo frikkin' hoo.)


2. Kyp is similarly nudged into choosing Harvard over Yale. This is not without drama, as the head of Global Watch has to intervene a little bit. Apparently, Kyp is dangerously close to choosing to go to Yale, a decision which would blow Global Watch's plans all to pieces. (Note to Global Watch: If your plans for world peace hinge on the decision of an 18-year old high school athlete, you need to change plans.)
Here's Kyp's dilemma:


And here's Global Watch's intervention:


3. Here's the inconsistency in Kyp's case. Global Watch controls Yale! It says so right here.


This is what I'm saying: If Global Watch truly wanted Kyp to choose Harvard over Yale, and they controlled the decisions of both schools, why didn't they just have Yale reject Kyp's application? They can do that, you know. They made the University of Michigan rescind its offer to Max. The University of Michigan is part of a state government--the most tangled snarl of bureaucracy devised by man. Getting Yale's Director of Admissions on board with this plan would have been a cakewalk compared to that. So why not just have Yale tell Kyp, "No"? I don't get it.

Then again, I'm not the genius who typed in Global Watch.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

I admit it.

I skipped ahead to the end.
You would too. Sometimes you just want the pain to stop, you know? Also, I was curious to see if any sex happened.*
It may shock you to know that Global Watch actually gets worse the closer it gets to its conclusion. And here's one more hilarious example of how Global Watch stinks.

"Viscous" for "vicious?" I'm starting to have trouble believing these are unintentional. That's just too funny to have happened by accident.

Please don't think my skipping to the end means this blog is nearing adjournment. Oh, no. Far from it. This mine's got too much gold in it.


* It doesn't. This shall be the topic of a future post.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Global Watch = Prejudice

I just found a new reason to hate Global Watch.

This section right here.


I read this section, and noticed the "then/than" error (again), a misplaced comma (again), and "sorted" where the author clearly meant "sordid" (oh, my).

But there are other sections in Global Watch with just as many errors that are just as laughable. I call attention to this one because it reveals a despicable message.

Read how Oleg is described: "less then [sic] average height and slightly overweight." No more than four lines later, he is described as "not the most attractive person." Global Watch, you think people who aren't tall and thin are ugly.

This got me thinking. All the heroes of the "book" are tall and good-looking and athletic. The evil mastermind is short and fat. Global Watch, you're a jerk.

To you, Global Watch, I dedicate this video. Listen closely. It's a song with a message.

Monday, September 14, 2009

Ok v. Okay


Pick one and run with it. And if you choose "Ok," capitalize it properly. It's an acronym, after all.
This is another example of how little time went into editing Global Watch. It's such an easy thing to fix with a "search and replace" on Microsoft Word. Someone should tell the person who typed in Global Watch that while the spell check function isn't foolproof, other features are very reliable and can help eliminate errors like this one.

Sunday, September 13, 2009

"Trifled With."



You know what good writers do?
They try to make every word count, and they try new or interesting ways to convey ideas.

You know what bad writers do?
Lazily reuse phrases they probably picked up in a comic book.

Oh, Global Watch. You put the "hack" in "hackneyed."

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Five mistakes

You know how long it took me to find these?
Five minutes. No lie.


Complement/Compliment.
Reigns/Reins.
These are not hard-to-catch errors.

But the little bit of icing on this cake of egregiousness is "awe" for "aw." Unless the father calls his son that because of this power. "Awe son, I am not imposing a curfew on you. Stay out as late as you want. You're the best." He might call one son "Awe son" to distinguish him from his less-gifted little brother, "Screwup son." "I have two boys, 'Awe son,' and 'Screwup son.'" This little tangent reminds me of a classic comedy routine by Bill Cosby.

Friday, September 11, 2009

Friday Night Movie

No date?
Stuck home alone by the phone?
Don't be a Mr. or Miss Lonelyhearts! Watch the latest episode of...
GlobalWatchWatch Theater!
In all sincerity, I think my version is much more interesting than the Global Watch original. I think if this were a scene in a real movie, I wouldn't make fun of it.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

The trouble with acronyms

Judging by this paragraph, I don't think the Global Watch typist has met many English experts.

Let's dispense with the technical stuff first. The person who typed in Global Watch really needs to get a book on the rules of punctuating and capitalizing dialogue. For instance, the "The" in the second half of the first quotation needs to be lowercase. You can figure out the rest.
What makes this paragraph stand out as an example of bad writing? The laughable acronym, "EEE." Get yourself some new English experts, Mikhailov. "EEE" does not sound friendly. Say it with me: "Eeeeee!" And lest I forget, that third "E" doesn't really stand for "Empire." Semantics, you know. So, to summarize:
The English experts came up with a "friendly" acronym that sounds like a screech and has a letter that is just there as "a third 'e.'"
Maybe I, as the self-appointed English expert on this blog, can suggest some more acronyms for your new world order. Hear me out. How about...
CAKE: "Czechs and Kazakhs Everywhere!" Everyone likes cake, you know.
BOOBS: "Borders Obsolete. Outcasts Bring Synergy."
FRIEND: "Frankly, Russia Is Extremely Not Dormant." See, that's "friendly."

If this exchange were to really happen, the blogs would have a field day.

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Are you kidding me?

Wolf Blitzer makes an appearance in Global Watch.

I'll not comment on the hyphenation and comma issues sprinkling this morsel of badness...
Wolf Blitzer, Global Watch? You create this fictitious organization and concoct all these scenarios and characters, and the one piece of reality you want to interject into your junkheap is Wolf Frikkin' Blitzer?

The author of this blog once wrote a short story in which he met Buddy Holly. When he wrote that, the author of this blog was in 7th grade. I'll leave it at that.

And the phrase "free reign?" Think about the words you're using, person who typed out Global Watch. The phrase is "free rein." Also, people want to know the answers to questions. I know, I know. This blog:Global Watch::Wolf Blitzer:brick wall.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Who the %#$@ is Max Park?

I declare Max Park to be the most poorly drawn character in literary history. And that includes the Shmoo.

The first error reminds me of a joke I once heard the great Emo Phillips tell: "When I was eight, my parents moved. When I was ten, I found them." I know from the second sentence that Max lives in Cherry Hill, NJ. Then I read that his parents live in a wealthy area. Does Max live with them? Global Watch does not spell this out.
And what about this wealthy area? People display their socio-economic plumage by popping their collars. *Cough*Douchebags*Cough*. That is how they "emphasis" that they can afford collars. Why does the typist of Global Watch not know the difference between nouns and verbs? Maybe he didn't get to go to a school like Max's.


This is Max Park. I'm sure of it. In this picture he is emphasizing his social standing.

The subtle, almost invisible mistake here is the "musical or artistic genius" line. Musicians are artists, too, Global Watch. Watch those redundancies.

Moving on, we see some bad typesetting after "nice." "Niiice," as my sarcastic friend would say.

Finally, one more of those mistakes that make Global Watch what it is, and keep this blog in business. "Being," Global Watch! Not "begin!"

Monday, September 7, 2009

Back to business

The weekend is over and the long, tear-inducing job that is this blog resumes. Back to business, you know. And back to basics.

Basics like reading the darn thing as you're typing and making sure it makes sense. Let's start at the top. With a sigh.
1. "in the dorms." The action in this scene takes place in one dorm.
2. There needs to be a period after "suits." Do you know why? Because there are two different thoughts being expressed here.
3. "Certainty." A noun. "Certainly." An adverb. There's a difference. I've seen college freshmen at 2 AM after their first kegger that were less sloppy than Global Watch's editing.
4. "looked like they were all business" should be "looked as though they were all business." Because I said so, that's why.
5. Five? Criminy. Five errors in this little bit of text alone. Alright. What does the typist mean, "looked like they were all business?" Were they carrying suitcases that said "AMWAY?" Were they drunkenly hitting on interns? Making "Office Space" jokes? Clarify, Global Watch. Clarify.
6. "two girl." I'm not going to comment on this one. I'll need some glycerin pills if I do.
7. Darn it, Global Watch! Learn to use commas!

Way to start the week, huh?

Friday, September 4, 2009

Four words

These four words represent everything wrong with Global Watch.

1. It's Appalachian Mountains!
2. They're not in Switzerland!
I'll make this easy.
Appalachian Mountains:

Switzerland:


What's really scary is that apparently the typist of Global Watch grew up in the Washington, DC area. The Appalachian Mountains were practically in his backyard. Maybe his parents told him he was living in Switzerland.

Note to my readers: I'm off for the weekend, but I will resume posting early next week.

Thursday, September 3, 2009

What did the French ever do to Global Watch?

Apparently English is not enough of a challenge for the author. He apparently goes out of his way to mangle French, aussi.

It's "coup d'etat" and "en route."
It's clear the author* doesn't know what these words mean. A person with a smattering of foreign language experience will tell you that the "etat" means "state." What does the typist** think a "ta" is? And how does someone come to the conclusion that "en route" is one word, without experiencing a sharp blow to the head at a young age?
The lesson for today: If you're not good with your own language, don't try to besmirch someone else's.

*"Author" will no longer be used to refer to the person who is selling Global Watch. Other words which shall no longer refer to Global Watch or the person who holds its copyright are "writing," "book," and "soul."

** "Typist" seems more accurate.

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Watch GlobalWatchWatch Theater.

I admit that the idea for this came from this blogger, who occasionally makes movies of Mary Worth strips* with this tool. I think it actually makes Global Watch semi-interesting.
Here's the dialogue I used for this movie.

As you can see, it has the usual slipshod errors. But it also has a great beat. So, with that, I give you the first installment of GlobalWatchWatch Theater.



*"Mary Worth strips" is a horrible phrase. I'm sorry.

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

I'm actually being generous on this one.

So I'll let the "none were/was" subject verb agreement slide. It could go either way. And I'll forgive the awkward and clumsy final sentence, with its inconsistent verb tenses in what should be parallel constructions. So what do we have left?

A lot, actually.
Again, there's that cursed "then/than" error. TWICE!
Also, why are single quotes used for the question? Why not double quotes? Weird.
Continuing on, there's the "his/her" term that does the sentence more harm than good.
Then, in a wonderfully frustrating redundancy, the author uses the phrase, "throughout history forever." What does he think "throughout history" means? Did he consider writing, "throughout history for 10 years?" I wouldn't be surprised if he did, and decided to really up the ante on this whole Kyp/Laura rivalry, and make sure that the reader understood what was at stake. "Throughout history forever." I think the author thinks he gets paid by the word.
The final error that needs pointed out is that no Harvard student (not even imbeciles like the ones in Global Watch) would ever ask the question that is contained in those precious single quotes. I hate to use internet lingo, but..."FAIL."