Saturday, January 08, 2011

Why skilled translators – and a good copyeditor – are worth the money.

Clarifying note: I left my new book at home, and had already read the magazines I bought in the terminal, and done some work on my laptop. Hence, the following:

I know I shouldn’t admit this but I RARELY read advertorials in magazines. You know, those pages designed to look like articles that are really ads. I say rarely because once in a while I am interested – at least somewhat – in the content but they always look like a “cheat” to me and somehow less worthy of my attention.

However, they often do contain reasonable, useful information for the right reader. Who am I to judge? In an effort to broaden my horizons and stop being so rigid, I read one on my flight last week, in the same issue I read in December. (Note to Continental: refresh your magazines!!)

It was enlightening. Turns out, I’ve been missing out on a lot of entertaining reading by skipping these pages. I offer the following excerpts for your reading pleasure, all punctuation and sentence (?) construction intact from the printed page:

Modern medical science now regards aging as a disease that is treatable and preventable and that “aging” , the disease, is actually acompilation of various diseases and pathologies, from everything, like a rise in blood glucose and pressure to diabetes, skin wrinkling and so on.

Review your comma splice rules and try this:

The next big breakthrough was to come in 1997 when a group of doctors and scientists, developed an all-natural source product which would cause your own natural HGH to be released again and do all the remarkable things it did for you in your 20’s. Now available to every adult for about the price of a coffee and donut a day.

Or this:

GHR is truly a revolutionary paradigm shift in medicine, and, like any modern leap frog advance, many others will be left in the dust holding their limited, or useless drugs and remedies.

Or this! I'm so sorry.

It is now thought that HGH is so comprehensive in its healing and regenerative powers that it is today, where the computer industry was twenty years ago, that it will displace so many prescription and non-prescription drugs and health remedies that it is staggering to think of.

Finally, my favorite passage (italics my own): It scares you! It scolds the government! It makes a compelling offer! Offers a case study! It's ridiculous!

If you want to stay on top of your game, physically and mentally as you age, this product is a boon, especially for the highly skilled professionals who have made large investments in their education, and experience. Also with the failure of Congress to honor our seniors with pharmaceutical coverage policy, it’s more important than ever to take pro-active steps to safeguard your health. Continued use of GHR will make a radical difference in your health, HGH is particularly helpful to the elderly, who, given a choice, would rather stay independent in their home, strong, healthy and alert enough to manage their own affairs, exercise and stay involved in their communities. Frank, age 85, walks two miles a day, plays golf, belongs to a dance club for seniors, had a girlfriend again and doesn’t need Viagra, passed his drivers test and is hardly ever home when we call – GHR delivers.

“..had a girlfriend again?” Had her? Is she gone? Did she not take HGH or GHR?

Okay, okay, okay. I know. I’m being very hard on the “reverse aging miracle” that is found in HGH or GHR or whatever they’re calling it. I am overlooking the “doctor recommended,” “all natural formula” being offered by Global Health Products. Who am I to judge? After all, it claims it can relieve symptoms of Asthma, Angina, Chronic Fatigue, Constipation, Lower back pain and Sciatica, Cataracts and Macular Degeneration, Menopause, Fibromyalgia, Regular and Diabetic Neuropathy, Hepatitis, helps Kidney Dialysis and Heart and Stroke recovery. It also reverses baldness and color restored. Improves sleep and emotional stability. Heightens five senses awareness. Increases skin thickness. What doesn’t it do????

It’s finally available to me: “..just in time for the aging Baby Boomers and everyone else from age 30 to 90 who doesn’t want to age rapidly but rather stay young, beautiful and healthy all of the time.”

“All of the time.” I ask you: if you’ve made it to age 90, do you want to stop aging rapidly? Do you want instead to stay young and beautiful ‘all of the time?’ And if you’re 30, are you concerned that you’re not staying ‘young, beautiful and healthy all of the time?’

And not for nothing, what if you’re, let’s say, 51, and you’re not beautiful? Does this make you beautiful? I’m guessing most of us need some help if I read this passage correctly: “Like a picked flower cut from the source, we gradually wilt physically and mentally and become vulnerable to a host of degenerative diseases, that we simply weren’t susceptible to in our early adult years.” Good God. Now I’m really depressed.

And by the way, they offer a guarantee. “..we are so confident of the difference GHR can make in your life we offer a 100% refund on unopened containers.” But how do you know if it works if you don’t open any ….oh, forget it. I want to try it. Just need to know if I can afford it…let me check. Okay. They offer an 877 number, a website …and NO PRICE. Anywhere on the page. I have no idea if this is $9.99 plus Shipping and Handling or $39.95 or $299.95 a month.

I know it probably costs no more than $9,999 / year (asides my own): “Growth Hormone first synthesized in 1985 under the Reagan Orphan drug act, to treat dwarfism (dwarfism??), was quickly recognized to stop aging in its tracks and reverse it to a remarkable degree. Since then, only the lucky (lucky??) and rich have had access to it at the cost of $10,000 US per year.

Oh, by the way: “These statements have not been evaluated by the FDA.”

I can only guess the following: many of the passengers on a plane are tired, cranky, business people who spend at least part of every flight re-evaluating their lives and trying to figure out how being on a plane and traveling to God knows where is what they imagined they’d be doing at this point of their lives. Or maybe that’s just me – I admit it. At some point in every trip, whether it’s on the plane, or in the rental car driving to another hotel, I think: “Really? This is what you were born to do?” And then I get lost – invariably – and get crankier because I missed the turn to What’s It Hotel just outside You Never Heard of It, Texas, Not Near Anything Remotely Fun, Florida or someplace equally diverting.

Maybe it’s the recirculated air in the plane that helps us believe these kinds of offers could be valid.

It was amusing, nonetheless and I'm not one to turn down amusement of any kind. Now I’m going to read these ads on every flight.

No comments: