keeping mum

Officer avoids sack after keeping mum on drug-fuelled ‘boys weekend’

This headline appeared on the website of Sydney’s leading newspaper this morning. He took his mother on a boys’ weekend? He kept her there (against her will)?

I just had to investigate. The article itself starts:

A police sergeant sacked for allegedly not reporting senior officers had eaten hash cookies during a drug-fuelled “boys’ weekend” will keep his job after a second attempt to kick him out of the force failed.

Oh, that ‘mum’: ‘silent, not saying a word’. (Which I guessed anyway.) This is not an expression I would naturally use, especially not in a news headline, especially not in the same news headline as a drug-fuelled boys’ weekend. Being an online edition, space is not an issue, so ‘keeping silent’ would be the far better choice.

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