Best headline ever?

Found on the Post-Gazette’s main page:

Am I outing myself as some sort of sci-fi nerd or would you say “frack” and “frak” have gone pretty mainstream?

Either way, I think the effects of “fracking” are “babies” … or “getting caught doing girls in the public bathroom.”


  1. KJ
    March 19, 2010 8:51 am

    Oh, Starbuck…

  2. Anna
    March 19, 2010 8:56 am

    Not being a sci-fi fan, can’t comment on the mainstreamicity of the words in that respect.

    In the oil/gas world, frack is short for fracture, which is how natural gas is extracted; the earth is fractured and the gas escapes via the fractures. Least that’s how I understand it.

  3. bucdaddy
    March 19, 2010 9:00 am

    I’ve written better (“Pittsnogle boggles Pitt”) but it’s not often you get to use “fracking” in a freaking headline.

    *tips hat*

  4. oldgraymare
    March 19, 2010 9:01 am

    So say we all, Ginny!

  5. ellie's mom
    March 19, 2010 9:32 am

    Anna is correct. Fracturing gas wells is done everyday. Rather than repeatedly using the word “fracturing”, the people in the gas business use the shorthand version “frac’ing” or “fracking”.

  6. SpudMom
    March 19, 2010 9:58 am

    You need a cigar and some hot ass shirtless Jamie Bamber.

    There’s a self-united husband, right there. *swoon*

  7. bluzdude
    March 19, 2010 10:14 am

    “Marcellus Shale Gas” sounds quite dangerous… Like what that hillbilly cop might have discovered behind closed doors in Pulp Fiction.

  8. Pa-pop
    March 19, 2010 10:29 am

    Next headline:


  9. Carol
    March 19, 2010 10:31 am

    I immediately thought of Starbuck, too. XD I think she used ‘frack’ more than anyone else in the series.

  10. Summer
    March 19, 2010 3:48 pm

    THAT is why I always spell it “fracing.” However, it’s a serious issue in rural communities where most people have well water, because a water infrastructure is unavailable.

    A lot of people believe the chemicals they use in the process — water and dissolved chemicals are forced into the ground at high pressure, separating the shale — have leached into people’s wells and farm animal water supplies.

    Some have said their water has changed color or taste or has particulates in it sortly after a well opens up near their home or they have become sick or their animals have died.

    The gas companies don’t have to tell you what they put in fracing water — it is a proprietary secret, so people imagine all sorts of things.

    No one really knows is fracing has an affect on water supply, so if a gas well is going in nearby, it is very important to have nearby residents’ water sources independenty tested to establish water quality BEFORE fracing starts.

    This completely useless public service announcement has been brought to you by the letters F and U.

  11. Kerby Zozula
    March 19, 2010 11:43 pm

    As a Pitt petroleum engineer from back in the day (now in SoCal) we were taught that it is fraccing.

  12. Ryan Mikita
    March 20, 2010 1:18 pm

    I was a fan of BSG from beginning to end and am so far interested in Caprica…but I still cringe a little every time i hear that “f” word. It reminds me of when I was like Ten and I would make the middle finger gesture completely upside down, so as to not point it towards God but still get the point across.

  13. PK
    March 20, 2010 1:31 pm

    I think the copy editor thought he might slip a pun through…I know Rob Owen is a big BSG fan.

    I remember when the original series came out in the ’70s…back then you could hardly even use “damn” on TV and it was supposed to be a kid’s show (NBC’s answer to Star Wars) so they came up with “frak” since the censors couldn’t block a swear word that didn’t exist.

    Of course, the new show took it and ran:

    And I’ll take a shirtless Jamie Bamber and raise you a Bodie James Olmos (Edward James Olmos’/Adama’s real son) who played Hot Dog. Yum.

  14. Traveller
    March 20, 2010 7:10 pm

    Frak used to be frack. They actually changed the spelling between the first BSG and the remake so they could go with the “dirty 4 letter word” thing.

    So, the natural gas lingo gets their frack and the Sci-Fi geeks get their frak. And, yes it has been going mainstream. I’ve seen it in many non sci-fi settings.

    I’ve even seen “frell” and “frelling”. (Farscape).

    The best, by far is from the creative mind of Joss Wheten (Firefly/Serenity). Why make up swear words when you can just swear in chinese.
    Gun hoe-tze bee dio-se!