looking for locomotives

I got some nice birthday gifts (mostly the ability to be around family) but possibly the best gift I got was this Wondermark strip:

I will henceforth refer to reading a contract as ‘looking for locomotives.’

As a bonus, and related to my recent post about plain english in the law, Wondermark is apparently working with the Center for Plain Language on a contest to reward plain (and terrible) use of plain English in communication. That is terrific to hear, and I wish them great luck with it. I only wish I had some appropriate examples to submit to the contest.

Posted in law

8 thoughts on “looking for locomotives”

  1. OK, so clearly angle brackets are a bad idea. Here’s a quote after all:

    We, along with our travel partners (the “Other Guys”), own Our Website and all of the text, images, software, trademarks, service marks or other material contained on Our Website (the “Good Stuff”). You will not copy or transmit any of the Good Stuff, except for your personal, non-commercial use on your computer.

  2. My family and I were once ambushed by a team of ninja television producers halfway up a hillside somewhere and asked to provide vox pops on something or other, I forget what. I took the three-page document they breezily asked us to ‘just sign, it’s just standard stuff’ and actually read it. In addition to learning my soul would belong to Robert Murdoch for evermore, I noticed that it stipulated a one-off payment of one pound (this was the UK) for each of us, and promptly insisted I got my quid. The cameraman had to dig it out of his pocket, and they remarked that no-one had ever actually asked for it before.

    Just amazes me to think people happily sign this kind of thing without reading it…

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