Unfortunately, that doesn’t always happen. Consider this headline from Monday’s New York Times.
On the sports page, “sudden death” nearly always means a tie-breaker.
In this case, though, “sudden death” meant that a high school football player had died.
That’s not a story you want readers to misunderstand. Either the headline writer created an insensitive pun or somehow didn’t notice the double-entendre. (I find it hard to believe the latter.) As of this morning, the same headline appeared with the online story.
In this case, there’s an easy fix: Substituting “student’s” for “sudden” eliminates the double-entendre and makes the headline more meaningful.
Routine Goal-Line Play
Leads to a Student’s Death
And Unsettling Questions
That would have been an easy way to keep from laying an egg.