Some of the best responses to yesterday’s grammar question came by e-mail. Emma, for instance: “Masturbating himself?” That just sounds riduculous. I’ve always prefered “manually manipulated.” When I worked at the tanning salon, I had to tell my boss that an elderly male customer had “digitally manipulated his anus” in the tanning bed. I didn’t know what else to say.
God gives all writers the material for their novel. We just have to be wise enough to notice it. I, for instance, was gifted with 20 years at a steadily declining small newspaper. Emma, on the other hand, had her stint at the tanning salon, where she witnessed enough disgusting human depravity for a trilogy, at least. Customers peeing in the wastebaskets, smearing the beds with bodily fluids and now, apparently, digitally manipulating their bummies — evidently there’s something about the combination of UV light and private rooms that makes people bonkers. Maybe it’s the little glasses. I’m tempted to ask Emma how she knew that about the digital manipulation, but I just had breakfast.
The moral of the story: Tanning is really bad for your skin. Among other things.
Of course, if you wanted to write a roman a clef about a rotten business, you really can’t beat TV news these days. Two companies play a game of pass-the-license, and the upshot is, a city loses another newsroom. Granted, TV newsrooms in Fort Wayne aren’t exemplars of the form. It still sucks.
Time to consider a serious career change. Maybe I can work for GM. I hear they give discounts on cars.