Out of the Mouth of a Bike Riding Teacher

We watched a fantastic motorcycle riding DVD called Ride Like a Pro 5.  It’s obviously part of a series. Besides the excellent tips on riding safely and expertly it also includes the exercises motorcycle police officers must master.  It’s great stuff.

Something the host said really stuck with me.  He said that before he took the motor officers’ course, he had 20 years of experience but he realised it only amounted to 1 year of experience repeated 20 times!  He admitted he kept making the same mistakes over and over until the course showed him how to do it right.

This resonated with me yesterday as I listened to a longtime, very experienced radio newscaster deliver a very poorly written sentence.  It wasn’t a slip-up – it was an intentional bit of prose.  I know this because he delivered two similarly constructed phrases later in the newscast.  The story concerned a murder and two men caught on surveillance video near the scene.  And I quote:  “Neither say police are considered suspects.”   Poor grammar, awkward construction, jumbled meaning.  What he meant to say was, “Police say neither man is considered a suspect.”  Instead what came out was that the two men don’t consider police to be suspects! 

When a person gets to a certain level in their broadcasting career, something often happens: their superiors are loathe to critique them.   The broadcasters are often left to run rampant on the airwaves and make mistakes over and over and over again.  Twenty years of experience composed of one year full of mistakes, twenty times over.

Back to the biking – I went out for an hour yesterday and practised some of the techniques in the DVD and I’ll be darned if they didn’t make things easier.   I still have the typical “girl” resistance to leaning over very far on turns but little by little I will chip away at that too.  Baby steps!

1 thought on “Out of the Mouth of a Bike Riding Teacher”

  1. Neither, say police, are considered suspects. Pauses. like white spaces in print, can actually make the point more effectively than squeezing in a few extra words.

    It took me a long time to realize the guy on the radio was not promoting Sandy Kovaker’s but, rather, Sandy Cove Acres.

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