There’s a lot of picking at food in the New York Times

Letter to Romenesko
From DANE S. CLAUSSEN: While the New York Times standards editor writes about the staff’s use of “famously,” they really need to fix their use of “picked at” when they are talking about people eating.

From the Times:

* June 22, 2013: “Another evening, as she picked at a salmon fillet in SoHo, the question led her to a one-word reminder that appears on her smartphone every …”

* May 29, 2013: “The runners, on the other hand, picked at their food, taking in almost 200 fewer calories than they had burned while running. The runners also …”

* May 5, 2013: “Mr. Olden said two weeks ago as he picked at the turkey burger he had ordered.”

* April 21, 2013: “….while Ms. Jones, 41, picked at a bass. The subway car …”

* March 9, 2013: “He shook his head, picked at the greens. ‘I guess it’s true,’ he said. ‘Nothing lasts forever.’ Lasting Memories. Except that is not exactly true.”

January 4, 2013: “‘She wouldn’t even let me in a class,’ Mr. Fleischer said last month, as he picked at hash browns with melted cheese in the nearly empty Pacific …”

* Nov. 30, 2012: “picked at cookies and crudités….”

* Oct. 13, 2012: “She ordered a spinach salad and an edamame salad from a deli, but only picked at them.”

* Sept. 18, 2012: “sitting alone with a white legal pad and a pen as he picked at a vegetarian breakfast burrito….”

* July 7, 2012: “But over dinner at a trendy St. Louis restaurant, he picked at his chicken…”

* April 9, 2012: “Phyllis Spielberger, a retired hat seller at Bendel’s, picked at a plastic dish of beets and corn….”

* January 9, 2013: “Even at the open mike, as students picked at potato chips and pineapple slices…..”

Doesn’t anyone simply eat anymore, or is everyone now eating, pardon me, picky?


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