Letter From an Editor
Dear Editor Jones:
Over the years that you have been editing my manuscripts, I have been more than happy to leave the details of modern “internet” formatting to you and your assorted and varied subalterns; I was, frankly, more than happy to avoid having to learn anything about it. You have, as far as I can tell, been doing an excellent job—when I access Speculative Grammarian using the office computer that my college insisted on putting on my desk, it always appears in short order, and in a readable font, and without the annoying moving advertisements that companies seem wont to scatter over sites in roughly the same way that infants distribute the products of their digestion. Occasionally a third of an ellipsis-mark is missing, but Jason, the young man from tech support who has been assigned to my portion of the building assures me that this is likely caused by my continued use of Internet Explorer 3, rather than by the site.
Recently, and to my profound alarm, however, I was volunteered by my department head as the dept. representative for our “Technology and Innovation Committee”. Apparently, everyone else had taken a term at it, and my turn was due. It is a thoroughly wretched experience, and I now have a much greater appreciation of the extent to which you have been shielding me and other contributors from such affairs. While we don’t have any direct say in what gadgets and “soft wares” our institution buys, we are required to write recommendations anyway (no one reads them), and are hence subjected to endless sales pitches by companies’ marketing representatives. I have been trying to maintain an air of supportive imperturbability, especially since I gather that marketing is somewhat of a holding-tank for those with learning disabilities, but the sheer level of vapid nonsense in their presentations is driving me to distraction.
In self-defense, I started writing notes about the various strains of vapidity involved in these productions, and then, of course organizing them (once a typologist, and all that). I tried to get additional information from Jason, who seems to have found all of this rather amusing, and he has suggested that it might be useful to other taxonomists. And so, while I suspect that you already know coping strategies much more advanced than the ones I will describe in the attached document, I am sending this along anyway, as a gesture of appreciation (and in hopes that you will continue to keep SG’s operational details well away from me).
Dr. Athanasious Schadenpoodle
PS: I have incorporated some of Jason’s suggestions, particularly in reference to tone. It all seems rather too “hip”, as they say, but I suppose it is the twenty-first century, etc. etc.