Simanaitis Says

On cars, old, new and future; science & technology; vintage airplanes, computer flight simulation of them; Sherlockiana; our English language; travel; and other stuff

“#&*%@!!” HE SAID

A FEATURE IN The Wall Street Journal, August 2, 2016, is titled “Vol. 29, No. 7: Vulgarities.” It updates this newspaper’s treatment of words and phrases that once weren’t uttered in polite society. Today, however, ….

WSJLogo

Briefly, The Wall Street Journal is adopting a practice that evolved more than 30 years ago at R&T, back when Dick Bartkus was publisher, the late Tony Hogg was editor, Wife Dottie was managing editor and Innes Ireland handled part of the magazine’s Formula One reporting. For reasons to become clear anon, the new WSJ/old R&T practice was a simple one, known at R&T as “The Jackie Stewart Rule.”

R&TLogo

It came about when Tony Hogg editorialized in the magazine about “rich Arabs pissing away their oil money in London casinos.”

Dick Barktus was livid. Not on ethnic, economic or anti-gambling grounds, but rather on the particular verb Tony had employed. “I never want to see things like this in R&T again!” Dick told Dottie.

Dottie complied. Whenever anyone submitted anything that offended her 4-H sensibilities, she’d stop Dick as he passed and asked for a ruling.

Dick quickly grew tired of this and said, “Look, Clendenin, it’s okay if Jackie Stewart says it, but we’re not going to use such language ourselves.” Thus, The Jackie Stewart Rule.

VulgarQuotes

It worked admirably well, and school librarians rarely complained about R&T’s choice of words.

Innes Ireland knew of the rule and also knew Jackie. In one GP report, Innes wrote, “Walking down the pit lane, I encountered Jackie Stewart who said it had been pissing rain.”

R&T ran it verbatim; just as, today, three decades later, the WSJ plans to treat less than 4-H utterances. ds

© Dennis Simanaitis, SimanaitisSays.com, 2016

One comment on ““#&*%@!!” HE SAID

  1. kkollwitz
    August 11, 2016

    Even now I expect a rectitude from R&T that I don’t from other carmags.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: