dust up

There’s nothing funny about a story of Turkish workers dying from silicosis after working in factories where sand is used to pre-age jeans. Nor is there anything funny about the Night Stalker who allegedly attacked 108 old people in the Croydon area over a period of 17 years.

Sadly, the juxtaposition of two reports in a newspaper can add an inappropriately humorous twist. Which is what happened in Sunday’s El Mundo, Crónica section, where, in the printed edition, the two stories occupied full pages opposite each other:

"El Mundo" double page spread, 22 November 2009

It’s not the double page spread that’s the problem, it’s the photo captions:
Jeans dust photo caption

On the left hand page we have the jeans story:
“The dust produced when jeans are faded using sand is extremely noxious.”

And opposite, we have a description of the Night Stalker:
“HE HATED DUST. Delroy Grant is 52. His ex-wife describes him as an evil and unfaithful man who hated untidiness and would go crazy over a speck of dust.”

Night Stalker photo caption

On the one hand, then, we have dust that kills; on the other, a dust-hating killer.

Author: don't confuse the narrator

Exploring the boundary between writer and narrator through first person poetry, prose and opinion

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