Wednesday, April 27, 2005

What is this?

For your perusal, an article from today's Guardian by the architecture correspondent:
Monument to police officers killed on duty.

Did you read it? To the end? In case you couldn't be bothered, here are the offending paragraphs:

"A band from the Kent constabulary played snatches of Elgar and other tunes as rain rattled down their tubas and turned the quietly dignified glass sentinel into a temporary "water feature". A sneering group of Late Elizabethan schoolchildren in damp fleeces and dripping baseball caps arrived. "Fuck me, it's the Queen," one shouted.

A police officer with a gun was not amused, but kept his powder dry. The schoolchildren of today, he might have thought, no longer speak as did the be-apped and short-trousered, or bereted and pinafored, pupils of half a century ago, when the only bobby anyone knew of killed on duty was PC Dixon, played by Jack Warner, in that silver screen favourite, The Blue Lamp."


What the hell was Jonathan Glancey thinking when he penned the last two paragraphs - was he desperate for copy, and had run out of things to say about the actual story? That must surely be the explanation. I mean, I consider myself fairly clued up on weird words, but what does "be-apped" mean? And what is it doing in a story about tragically murdered police officers?

It's journalism, gone mad.

UPDATE: the word is of course "becapped", and I was just so weirded out by the Kafka-esque turn of the piece that I didn't correct the typo when i was proof-reading it. (To be fair, none of the other staff in the office worked out what it was supposed to say either) It still makes no bloody sense.

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