Linguist, lexicographer, radio host, public speaker

Best lede in years

This New York Times lede is the best I’ve seen on a story in a long while: A shirtless man was found dead in the basement of the Indonesian Consulate in Manhattan today, a butcher knife protruding from his chest, the police said.

Compare this to Newsday’s blah lede: An Indonesian man was found dead with a knife in his chest on Sunday in the basement of his country’s consulate on the Upper East Side, police said.

Tomorrow the tabloids will be all over this story like a bloodstain.

Both ledes might merely be different wire story drafts and not written by the newspapers at all; the Newsday URL is marked “AP New York.”

author avatar
Grant Barrett