“You know, just to monitor your overall progress,” said the one who looked like a young Paul Newman but without the gourmet popcorn. “Dispatch asked us to come by and take a look around.”
“Chief!” called out the one with the drug-sniffing dog, “I think I found something over here!”I knew what he was talking about—heck, I’d had misgivings about it myself. I tried to distract them.
“Gentleman, I just made lemon Bundt cake with smiling sour cream! Who wants a piece?”The Chief walked over to the officer with the dog. “So, what’d you find, Lieutenant?”
The Lieutenant hung his head, embarrassed for me. He picked up a few hand-written sheets of paper, the ink not even dry. “I found ‘Phone ringing off the hook’. Sorry, sir.”All eyes were on me.
“‘All eyes were on me’? That is what you wrote next?! Oh, come on!” wailed the Newman clone.I could see the handwriting on the wall.
“No! Stop! You are making my eyes bleed! Stop!”“I’m not doing it on purpose! I could talk until I’m blue in the face, but it still wouldn’t convince you!” I wailed.
“You just used that word: wailed. Too unusual to use twice in a row. Ever heard of a proof-reader? Or thesaurus.com? I'll let you off with a warning for that one, but ...”
He got out his notepad and wrote me a ticket.“Mrs. MOV: Rampant Cliché Abuse. Clichés make for lazy, unimaginative writing.” He ripped the citation off and handed it to me with a flourish. “Do you have anything to say for yourself?”
“No. I mean, yes! Officer, you have to understand: I was still editing! Rome wasn’t built in a day, I was still working on it.”The silence was deafening. You could hear a pin drop.
“That. That is exactly what I am talking about. STOP IT.” The Newman clone reached for his gun.“Wha— what are you doing?” I shrieked.
“The clichés are not the only reason we stopped by.” They all looked at each other and then stepped closer to me.“There are other forms of Blog Abuse.”
“Like … like what, exactly?” I murmured.“Blog Clutter,” said the policeman with the dog. The dog barked in obvious agreement.
“Ha! Then you have the wrong gal. I am a Virgo, and we don’t do clutter.” I folded my arms across my chest, smug. I could practically hear the Gods of Vacuuming applauding. Well, if the vacuuming weren’t so loud.“She’s right, Chief,” said a different officer. He was holding a very official-looking clipboard. “These are the other blogs we need to get to,” he pointed to his list, “they’re the ones with all the random stuff crammed in all along the sides, bottom, top, everywhere so you can’t even read the content.”
The Chief nodded solemnly.“Let me remind you, MOV, there are other offenses. Some, you have been guilty of, others, well, you may have skipped our notice this time , but you should click those computer keys very cautiously in the future. Really. I mean it.”
I knew what he was talking about, he didn’t have to say it. The blogs with white words on a neon purple background, making migraines a certainty. The blogs with no correct link back, ensuring you could never find their blog, even in a Google search. The blogs that did not provide a "follow" option. The blogs that still used word verification for comments. The blogs with no apparent paragraph breaks. No punctuation. Excessive fragments. Repetition. Fragments.The list was endless.
“What about the bloggers that go on and on and on and don’t really even have a point and then the end is just not funny? What about those?”He got his ticket book back out and started scribbling again. “You’re reading my mind, MOV. That’s another $500.”