Hi Miss Snark,
From a link to Kit Whitfield's site, from I-don't-recall-where, I read her "The Other Side" pages with some publishing advice for newbies. (Kit's just coming out with a book, but used to work as an editor.)
The Secret Language of Editors
This is hilarious. Clearly some UK-isms (sending an envelope for the return of pages; sending three chapters with a query; and so on) but spot on about tone.
I'll ..um...lay you ...dollars to doughnuts we see this stuff in the crapometer.
Thanks to Kendall for the ..err...hook up.