Eleven Blue Men and Other Narratives of Medical Detection, by Berton Roueché (published in Boston, of all places: Little, Brown and Co., 1947) is stories mostly describing 1940's cases dealt with by the New York City Health Department. Sort of an epidemiological Dragnet. The contents of the book originally appeared in The New Yorker. The title story is about eleven old winos who live in flop-houses or in the street, and who all come down one day with something that turns them blue. (Technically, they are diagnosed with cyanosis.) The action quickly focuses on the somewhat aptly named Eclipse Cafeteria. The Health Department's Dr. Ottavio Pellitteri described this as ``[s]trictly a horse market, and dirtier than most. The sort of place where you can get a full meal for fifteen cents. There was a grind house on one side, a cigar store on the other, and the `L' overhead. Incidentally, the Eclipse went out of business a year or so after I was there, but that had nothing to do with us.''
You probably don't care, but that's on page 93 of my edition (11th printing, and looking to be about the seventh edition, 1953).
There was an old rec.humor.funny file of stupid behaviors that should be avoided by characters in horror movies that included the following advice:
``If your children speak to you in Latin or any other language which they do not know, or if they speak to you using a voice which is other than their own, shoot them immediately. It will save you a lot of grief in the long run. NOTE: It will probably take several rounds to kill them, so be prepared.''
(You can easily find variously corrupted versions of this on the web, though I can't find any variant at <www.netfunny.com/rhf>. However, you can actually learn a bit of Latin from the first of the rhf oracularities archived at this page.)
Why don't you visit William Harris's The Intelligent Person's Guide to the Latin Language? It's part of a larger site with Latin and Latin-related information.
Other people (?) might be interested in the old favorite Allen and Greenough Latin grammar, available on-line.
The online Weather Underground (discussed at weather) is available in Latin.
A woman I know teaches Latin at a real university that I will not name. (I don't have to, it's already got a name.) A survey she conducts at the first class meeting of the first semester (what, you haven't done your homework?) includes the question ``Why Did You Choose to Take Latin?'' (It's fill-in-the-blank.) One answer: ``I am a big T.S. Eliot fan and thought it would be cool to actually understand what he meant when he makes Latin references.'' Whatever turns you on.
For more Latin-study resources, see the Latin entry.
Obviously, an alternative is needed. The unanimous recommendation of the Stammtisch, which I will reveal to spontaneous cheers in a surprise announcement to the Stammtisch tomorrow at noon, is Limbo-stick.
It is important to keep in mind the distinction between a chemical in its liquid state and a chemical in aqueous solution, indicated by (aq) instead of (l). For example, H2SO4 (l) is liquid hydrogen sulphate, a strong oxidizing agent, while H2SO4 (aq) is sulfuric acid.
The liquid state, it should be noted, is not always distinguished from the gaseous state: for a single-component system above the critical temperature, there is just one fluid phase which increases continuously in density as pressure increases. The (l) and (g) notation wasn't designed to deal with those complications.
Learn more at its entry in WebElements and its entry at Chemicool.
Most people in LA also speak English, so you're not terribly handicapped if you don't speak Spanish or one of the other local languages.
Los Angeles is a city and a county. Unlike San Francisco, however, the city is a proper subset of the county. An oddly-shaped, multiply-connected subset. Have a look at a map.
Since Los Angeles is often called ``the city of Angels,'' and you just know that can't refer to the movie stars, I imagine it is well known that Los Angeles is Spanish for `the angels.' A longer form of the toponym is El Pueblo de Nuestra Señora, La Reina de Los Angeles. This is often translated as `The City of Our Lady, Queen of the Angels.' This is close enough, but pueblo is `town.' (Metropolis has the same meaning in Spanish as in English; ciudad is `city'; aldea, the slightly pejorative/affectionate pueblucho, and the slightly informal and totally unnecessary pueblito could all be translated `village.' You can claim that semantic fields needn't overlap between languages, and there may be some small cities that are called pueblos rather than ciudades, but to most bilinguals, `city' here is a mistranslation obviously based on an anachronism.)
The original name of the settlement is actually a bit longer: El Pueblo de Nuestra Señora, La Reina de Los Angeles de la Porciúncula. In order to parse this, it might be best to proceed in chronological order. Early in the thirteenth century, one Francisco Bernardone, son of a wealthy cloth merchant of Assisi, went god-crazy and founded a religious order. (A number of the legends about his life involve his losing all his clothes. Details? You need more details? See the article in the Catholic Encyclopedia. His mom's name was Pica!) He was eventually canonized, and anyway he renounced his family, so he is generally referred to as St. Francis of Assisi (San Francesco d'Assisi in Italian). BTW, this is the same San Francisco that the settlement in northern California was named after. Even people who don't believe in sainthood call him Saint Francis, the same way a lot of people use expressions like A.D. Now look, stop distracting me.
This stuff didn't happen all at once. The trouble started one day when St. Francis heard a voice which told him (in Italian, I think) ``Go, Francis, and repair my house, which as you see is falling into ruin.'' Being a somewhat literal-minded chap, he thought this was an order to physically repair some church buildings. To do this, he alienated his rich father and ended up collecting stones and doing the work with his own hands. Smart going. So he rebuilt some derelict old chapels in the area, including one called Santa Maria degli Angeli (Italian for `Saint Mary of the Angels'). One day while he was praying there, the voice tried again, giving him rather more detailed instructions. Nobody really knows what day this happened, so let's just say that it almost certainly happened on February 24, 1208. So he went off and started to collect disciples. By some miracle, he eventually gained approval for his new religious order from Pope Innocent III, who seems otherwise to have been preoccupied mostly with excommunicating people. He was able to leverage this spiritual venture capital: the Benedictines let him have Santa Maria degli Angeli. It reminds me of The Jackie Robinson Story (1950).
Jackie Robinson was the first black baseball player to (fill in the blank; among other things, the first to enter the Hall of Fame at Cooperstown). He grew up in the Los Angeles area and attended the University of California at Los Angeles, but that's not what I had in mind. In the movie about his life, as a little nappy-headed boy, he is given a baseball glove by a white man. But it is, you must excuse the word, a niggardly gift: the leather is broken and the man who gives it to him first pokes the padding back into the opening, so his parsimony won't be immediately obvious.
Well okay, maybe it's not such a great analogy, but the chapel the Benedictines gave Francis was no generous gift. It was on a little bit of land called porziuncula or porziuncola, meaning `little portion.' That term might as easily have described the little chapel. In fact, it did. (Also, as the place was built up over the years into a basilica and a monastery, a village grew up nearby. That place is generally known as Portiuncula, although its official name is Santa Maria degli Angeli.)
Francis eventually spent the greatest part of his life hanging out at this place. For this and reasons one may deduce from the preceding story, the place is very important to the order he founded. One of the most important dates associated with the place is August 2. I'm not going to try to explain why. It's technical, and it has something to do with canceling all your sins. No wait -- only the guilt from all your sins. Whatever, there's always a catch. Anyway, it's kind of like ethical bankruptcy: all your old moral debts are liquidated and you get a fresh start, or something like that.
In 1769, Father Juan Crespi, a Franciscan priest, was tagging along on the first European land expedition through California (led by Captain Fernando Rivera y Moncado). On August 2 that year, they came across what Crespi described in his journal as a beautiful river from the northwest. On account of the date, the river was named Nuestra Señora de Los Angeles de la Porciúncula. The settlement made on that river in 1781 was named after the river. I have read that it ``came to be known as'' El Pueblo de Nuestra Señora, Reina de los Angeles de la Porciúncula. I guess they had time to burn in those days (and heretics to spare), and could play out their toponyms to the linguistic horizon. I don't know how the queen business snuck in there, either. Anyway, the ``official'' name is supposed to have been merely El Pueblo de la Reina de los Angeles.
The Villanova University Law School provides some links to state government web sites for Louisiana. USACityLink.com has a page with mostly city and town links for the state.
``I will make it a felony to drink small beer.''
In one election year some years back, columnist Dave Barry's presidential platform included search and destroy operations on the light-beer manufacturing infrastructure. Okay, light beer isn't LA beer. Light beer is beer with reduced carbohydrates-other-than-alcohol. Yick, as the bard would no doubt have said.
There is an aura or aroma or something about-- You know, I'm reminded of the time the gang was over at the brew pub on Main, and Adly thought his beer smelled odd. I had to ask him to remove his hand (from the mug! don't be so bloody-minded) so I could smell the beer instead of it.
Anyway, there's an atmosphere or aura of ridiculousness about small beer, a notion that it's beneath notice. In Othello, by way of expressing the ultimate in profitless activity, Iago gives ``to suckle fools and chronicle small beer.''
Saint Mary's Women in Labor
Actually, the phrase I heard growing up was usually día hábil, which has the same meaning. There are some indications that the phrase with laborable might be a bit more common in Spain, but I'm too lazy to research this important question. Judging from ghits, the hábil phrase is about 27% more common than the laborable phrase. Interestingly, the plural form días hábiles occurs on 3.25 times as many pages as its singular, while días laborables occurs on only 2.62 times as many pages as its corresponding singular. This suggests that there might be some semantic difference, but it isn't one that people seem to be conscious of. The phrase día útil (literally `useful day') and its plural each have ghits roughly equal to about 1% of those for the common phrases. It seems to have become the common term in Peru. If you don't filter for language, you get a lot of hits for dia útil, which is the standard Portuguese phrase. (Google is not fastidious about accents, which would make a sharp language distinction. Sometimes this is an inconvenience. In determining general usage, however, it's probably best to ignore accents, since a lot of writers are unfastidious as well.) In Spanish, día[s] de semana corresponds to `weekday[s].'
``The Los Angeles Council of Engineers and Scientists (LACES) and/or its antecedents was founded in 1930.'' They couldn't be more specific? ``It is a coordinating organization of technical societies and associations in the greater Los Angeles area.''
``The specific and primary purpose for which the Council is formed is to operate for educational and charitable purposes by promoting the advancement of engineering and science.''
Specifically, ``an evaluation program designed to examine the process and outcomes of the alcohol and other drug (AOD) programs in Los Angeles.''
Relax, two, three, four,
Relax, two, three, four,
Relax, two, three, four...
The Ladino tradition seems to have been particularly strong in Turkey. Between 1910 and 1948, nineteen Ladino-language newspapers were published in the US by the Turkish-Jewish immigrant community. My source for this is (indirectly) an essay by Aviva Ben-Ur in Part I of Multilingual America: Transnationalism, Ethnicity, and the Languages of American Literature, ed. Werner Sollors (NYU Pr., 1998).
In the 19th and early 20th centuries, there were nearly 400 Ladino newspapers in Turkey. I'm not sure how many were simultaneous, or how name changes are taken into account. My source for this is (indirectly) the essay of Stanford professor Aron Rodrigue, ``The Ottoman Diaspora,'' in Cultures of the Jews, ed. David Biale.)
Ladino newspapers are treated as some sort of distant historical phenomenon, but I know that in Israel you could still buy a Ladino newspaper off the newsstand in the late 1970's. My source for this is my parents, who brought back a copy. Traditionally, Ladino was written in Hebrew characters, but this paper was printed in Roman characters. I suspect that this was a side-effect of Kemal Ataturk's reforms. The main systematic difference between the orthography of that Roman-character Ladino and that of ordinary Spanish was the use of the letter k where Spanish normally uses qu or c. There was serialized romance novel on the inside pages, and I don't remember much else. The language isn't much harder to understand than that of Cervantes. In Jerusalem in 1989 I chatted in Spanish with a Ladino-speaking bus driver. In 1987, when I attended the Hot Electrons Conference in Boston, a woman outside the conference hotel asked me for directions (people always ask disoriented visitors for directions). At first I didn't realize she was speaking Spanish, and even after I realized it her speech was a challenge. When I went back into the hotel I told Bob ``man, that woman's Spanish was strange!'' He replied that maybe my Spanish sounded just as strange to her. Bob obviously didn't speak Spanish, but perhaps this expressed a certain sympathetic perspective. A couple of years later he married a Hispanic woman. Anyway, Ladino isn't as strange as some Mexican dialects.
Lyndon Baines Johnson, one of the most effective majority leaders in the history of the US Senate, married a woman known as Lady Bird. She was actually born Claudia Alta Taylor, but her nurse's comment that she was as ``purty as a ladybird'' led to her being called ``Lady Bird,'' ``Lady'' and ``Bird.'' She used ``Bird'' on her marriage license, but eventually she, her husband, and their children (daughters Lynda and Lucy) all had the initials LBJ. Lyndon was presidential candidate John Kennedy's running mate in the 1960 elections, the ticket won, and now I'm finally done writing the well-known and due-diligence stuff.
The only reason I put this entry here was so that I could draw attention to some relevant comments of Jessica Mitford. She was born in England on September 11, 1917, and emigrated to the US in 1939 with her first husband. The comments are in an article that by now is surely obscure. [Details about the article (``You-All and Non-You-All'') can be found in the U and non-U entry.] The most relevant information is that the article was written for and published in the American magazine Esquire in May 1962.
The prejudice Northerners feel towards Southerners is roughly parallel to that felt by English people towards Americans, and is compounded of many of the same ingredients--a thoroughgoing dislike of their public policies, contempt for their level of education and culture, and a sort of instinctive recoil at the sound of the accent--larded in both cases, it must be said, with a thick layer of that particular form of snobbishness that sneers at the provincial. It is distasteful to the Northerner that a human being should have the given name of Lady Bird; it grates on the Northern ear to hear an educated person say ``sumpn'' and ``prolly,'' or speak of a ``mess of fried chicken'' pronounced ``maiss of [sic] frad chickn.''
For more about names associated with Jessica Mitford, see the Jessica Mitford entry.
L1 through L3 are in the same straight line with the Sun and the planet, the order being L2 - planet - L1 - sun - L3. L3 through L5 are in the same circular orbit as the planet; they form an equilateral triangle with each other, and L4 and L5 each form an equilateral triangle with Sun and planet. Only L4 and L5 are stable against perturbations by other bodies; several asteroids, called the Trojan asteroids, orbit near the Sun-Jupiter L4 and L5 points, and Saturn has small satellites at its L4 and L5 points with some of its larger satellites.
All I want to know is, was this dreamed up before the dance?
The mailing list classicslgb was superseded in fall 2000 by a mailing list also called lambdacc. ``[L]ambdacc is an e-mail discussion group for those interested in the interaction between queer studies/theory, gender studies/theory, and Classics. Only subscribers can post, and the list of subscribers is kept confidential.'' You can browse its hypertext archives or subscribe by writing to firstname.lastname@example.org with the message "subscribe lambdacc" in the body (no quotation marks). To contribute, send a message to <email@example.com>. Subscribers who wish to remain anonymous should write to: <firstname.lastname@example.org>.
October is also National Disability Employment Awareness Month and National Breast Cancer Awareness Month in the US. One almost has the flattering sense that one's attention is being competed for. To celebrate (if that's the term) these months (or is it month?), many local organizations organize ``awareness luncheons'' -- usually early in the month(s?), sometimes coinciding with Columbus Days. It's been going on for years, although I'd never been awa-- I mean, I hadn't noticed. But I noticed this year. This morning a radio host interviewed a couple of organizers for the local annual Disability Awareness Luncheon. I wanted to call in and advise, ``Don't wear your Sunday best!'' Later this morning, I saw a bumper sticker that said ``Children Are A Gift From God.'' I happen to know some parents of teenagers and of two-year-olds who would disagree. (I mean the parents would disagree. The others would be disagreeable as a matter of course.) But that wasn't what I thought when I saw the bumper sticker. I thought: ``If children are a gift from God, why does He give these gifts to so many people who violate His sacred laws against fornication, eh? What's the logic here, some kind of reverse psychology? I'm not sure I `get' the parable of the workers in the field either.'' Alas, the bumper sticker didn't bear further analysis. (I mean, there wasn't any further analysis included on it. Okay, maybe I mean it the other way too.)
And this year (2006), Columbus Day is observed on Monday, October 9. In the US. In Canada, that day is Thanksgiving. You know, I could be doing something useful with my time. Not this.
BTW, I just googled ``Language Infelicity Awareness Month,'' and it seems to be something I invented myself. I figured you'd want to know.
A propos of nothing, the editor writes
If you aspire to greater LAN's, you can become an MCNE.
Sure, I'll do that tomorrow afternoon.
Okay, if you've read this far, you've got too much time, so I'll just blather on. My old laptop died and needs to be replaced. Technically, perhaps, maybe it only failed to resurrect. I had developed a number of increasingly bizarre resuscitation tricks to keep it going for 7 or 8 months after the computer repair place charged me $40 to report that they couldn't even get it started. When these tricks finally stopped working I opened it up and didn't find the mechanical or heat-sink problem I hoped was the trouble, and I never reassembled it. It's kind of weird, like doing an autopsy to make certain the patient is dead. If a patient dies on the operating table, do they always sew him (or her, or perhaps it's ``the operand'') up? Do they stuff the organs back in haphazardly? I suppose if I'd closed up the laptop it might have worked again. Machinery often exhibits that kind of magic: open it, look inside, poke around, give it a good scare, close it, and it works. But it was such a tricky hassle to open it that I had to balance the possibility of a miraculous recovery after a tedious and exacting reassembly against the prospect of having to open it up again to retrieve the hard drive. Gary had a similar experience. You wonder if making the laptop cases unnecessarily intricate to open isn't part of the marketing strategy, something like programmed obsolescence. Considering that the profit in printers is in the ink-cartridge refills, or that Kodak used to sell its cameras at a loss to profit on film development (so I've heard), the idea doesn't seem impossibly devious.)
Reportedly a ``huge logistical hassle'' for the dungeon master.
You know, this idea could be extended to many activities that are now experienced virtually. For example, addictive computer solitaire games could be played in nonvirtual space (a whole universe parallel to the internet; quaintly and incorrectly known as ``the real world''). This is a bit impractical, but it could be done with perseverance and playing pieces made of card. Some of the computer interactivity could be simulated by changing the rules and installing analog devices known as other people. Just a thought.
Read Don Quixote first; it explains everything.
``The Latin American Studies Association (LASA) is the largest professional Association in the world for individuals and institutions engaged in the study of Latin America. With over 4,800 members, twenty-five percent of whom reside outside the United States, LASA is the one Association that brings together experts on Latin America from all disciplines and diverse occupational endeavors, across the globe.''
Here's something unusual: a LASA International Congress is held every eighteen months. It's not so they can hold it in the same season in alternating hemispheres, though. Recent meetings:
It is something between a pie and a mélange; there are membranes but they are permeable, the layers must maintain their integrity and yet they exist in an exciting dialectic tension to the molten oozy cheesy oily juices which they separate, the goo must almost but not completely successfully threaten the always-discernible-yet-imperiled imposed order.
The speech was published as the essay on pretentiousness, in Taking Liberties: Gay Men's Essays on Politics, Culture and Sex, ed. Michael Bronski (NYC: Richard Kasak Bks., 1996).
I bought Heavenly Bodies: Remembering Hollywood and Fashion's Favorite AIDS Benefit off the dollar table, figuring it would at least have some revealing décolletage, some sexy cleavage. But no, the entire book was one big bust. A decade of shows; ten chapters for ten featured designers, more or less. Chapter 7 was ``Calvin Klein -- Beige, Booze, Babes, and Boys in the Bowl.'' The facing page shows models looking more unattractive than you could have imagined it possible for beautiful women to look in transparent fashions. A kind of negative achievement. They also look appropriately somber, which I guess is one of the things you have to get down pat before you can graduate with a Bachelorette of Modeling (that's what you earn at beauty college, right?). The picture bears the following CK quote:
It's important that we use only arugula lettuce in the salad and no tomatoes! The salad has to match the chicken, the pasta, and the table linens!
I don't know about you, but I think I see the outlines of an aesthetic philosophy emerging here, and it's not to my taste. Chapter 8 is ``Isaac Mizrahi -- Le Miz at the Chinese Theater.'' If the author's French wasn't any better than mine, then perhaps ``Le Miz'' was supposed to be pronounced like ``lay me'' in English. If so the pun was doubtless inadvertent, since it is tasteless. Instead, the pun is on Les Mis, popular abbreviation for Les Misérables, a hit musical based on Victor Hugo's novel of the same name. Anyway, the designer quotes in that chapter of the miserable Heavenly Bodies book begin with this:
Fashion is about women not wanting to look like cows -- although cows are kind of charming, aren't they?
Why buy the cow when you can get the mozarella at a reasonable price?
This was a link to related instructional material from Virginia Tech, but now it's gone 404 and we'll never know. (Virginia Tech's Chemistry Department developed some nice introductory materials for optics and spectroscopy, which it made available on-line in the 1990's. These were eventually removed from the VT site, with forwarding links to SciMedia (now autoforwarding to SciMedia, Ltd.), which has scaled back on positive externalities. They now feature links to things they sell, with English pages badly or very incompletely translated.)
Argos, a resource for the ancient and medieval worlds which went online on October 3, 1996, billed itself as ``the first peer-reviewed, limited area search engine (LASE) on the World-Wide Web.'' Effective February 6th, 2003, Argos was taken offline. Insufficient funding for regular upkeep and maintenance was cited as the cause. Some of the people who contributed reviews were mighty nonplussed not to have been informed of the service suspension.
Here's some instructional material from Virginia Tech. Here's Laser Focus World.
For in a liter he lay, laser at Rome
This describes Vespasian, who lay in a litter at Rome, suffering from an infestation of wasps (wasp is vespa in Latin) in his nose. The word laser, though it clearly means `leisure,' seems like a bit of a semantic stretch in this particular instance, but this is one of the classics of alliterative poetry, and the unknown author wanted a word beginning in el. The poem dates from the late fourteenth century and has been argued to be of ``extreme West Yorkshire provenance.'' (I'm not sure whether extreme here modifies West, but FWIW, West Yorkshire is the area of Leeds in northern England, a few counties south of Scotland.) Because this is Middle English, it is well likely that some manuscripts used different spellings of the word in question. I haven't looked at a scholarly edition, so I don't know what other spellings were used.
The OED2 lists laser as 14-16th century Scottish spelling, and examples John Barbour's The Bruce, dating from 1375 or a little bit later. It's another romance, a nonchalant fraud in simple masculine rhyme (The Archedene off Abbyrdene / In Brwyss his Buk has gert be sene), and it could suffer no better-deserved fate than to be butchered for television. At xx. 234 it reads
Gif God will me gif Laser and space so lange till liff.
(No, I don't know what was to be done or by whom, if God gave him time and space. Do yer ain reseerch.)
The German word Leser means `reader' (from the verb lesen, `to read'). A letter to the editor is a Leserbrief (lit. `reader letter'). Leser is pronounced like the English word laser, except that the final arr is audible more to the mind than the ear (roughly: ``layz-ah,'' but that ``ah'' is between English ah and eh). Also, the first vowel is a lengthened (I mean extended-duration) short e (/e:/) rather than the ``long a'' diphthong of English. (Look, if you have any trouble with this, just imagine California Governator Ahnuld Shvahtsenaygah saying ``laser.'')
The word laser has been borrowed from English into German, and as is typical with such loans in German, one is simply supposed to recognize the word as foreign and pronounce it in an approximation of the original English pronunciation. That approximation is in fact the German pronunciation of the German word Leser. However, some ignorant persons know no better and pronounce laser according to the standard rules of German orthography, so it comes out roughly as ``lahz-ah.'' The Duden Deutsches Universalwörterbuch actually offers this as an alternate pronunciation. When Wolf left Austria 20 years ago, this alternate pronunciation was ignorant and decidedly incorrect, but who knows now?
The procedure consists of cutting a flap in the epithelium (protective outer covering of the cornea) with a fine knife called a microkeratome, then reshaping the interior of the cornea by ablating the exposed surface with an excimer laser. The released flap rebonds and heals quickly after the operation. (One of the failure modes of the procedure is if the flap doesn't flip back into the right position and heals off-center. A rarer failure mode is that it doesn't heal.)
Lasik is a development from photorefractive keratectomy (PRK), in which the epithelium was removed and healed, but painfully. That in turn was an improvement on radial keratotomy (RK), which used mechanical surgery. In principle, LASIK should be better than PRK. For a variety of practical reasons, it's still a tough call between PRK and LASIK.
Excimer lasers specialized for eye surgery were developed by Summit Technology. This company and VISX are the dominant suppliers of lasers for eye-surgery applications in the US.
Most websites on lasik are those of individual practitioners or ophthalmology practices. Visit PRK and LASIK Today instead.
Even today, many papers are written in Latinate.
I can't seem to decide what entry to favor with information. Check out the L. and Latin entries.
There are a lot of Latin learning materials on the web. See, for example, ``Latin Teaching Materials at Saint Louis University.''
Latinteach is an email discussion group for Latin teachers. The website has a variety of resources for teachers and students. There's also a Latinteach WebRing.
I've noticed that girls named Virginia are at a substantially increased risk of growing up to become Latin teachers.
The words tène (`shallow') and ténevière (`submerged hillock') are colloquial terms used by the fishermen of Lake Neuchâtel. Eduoard Desor, in his Les Palafittes: ou, Constructions Lacustres du Lac de Neuchâtel (1865), p. 77, derives them (sans doute) from the Latin tenuis. This is plausible and even probable, but he triggers a thought by noting that the German word is dünn. The German word and its English cognate thin are generally regarded as independent derivations from Indo-European; it seems possible that tène has an old west Germanic derivation.
Contemporary Greek and Roman writers referred to La Tène culture as Celtic or (equivalently) Gaulish. We have no direct evidence for their language, and modern writers like to stress that language, culture, and descent may not be correlated.
George Mason University (GMU) is developing a hypertext library of Latin texts.
There are a number of ongoing on-line Latin study groups. One with a very good reputation is LatinStudy. The GROUP LATIN STUDY list keeps track of the activities of all the on-line Latin study groups. For subscription and other information, see the Group Latin Study List FAQ kept by Diane Cooper.
There seems to be a burgeoning interest in Latin in the schools, and a corresponding shortage of Latin teachers.
For beginners, we give a flavor of Latin declensions at the A.M. entry. For the more advanced, we serve a Latin crossword puzzle here.
You can read the news in Latin from Finland.
Of course, if you really know no Latin at all, the place where you want to start, and which will give you an idea of the power, imagination, and utility of the Roman tongue, is this limited sampling of Latin dirty words.
Here are the last two paragraphs (pp. 36-37) of chapter II, ``South of the
However, it is in the field of music that we take the cake. Cuba's ``Peanut Vender'' [sic] precipitated the avalanche. The United States has been simply swept off its feet by the tempo and melody of our popular music. Rumbas, congas, and sambas have tended to displace the long popular American jazz. From tango through rumba to conga, Latin America has conquered the United States. The delicate Mexican songs have completed this subtle annexation of our powerful industrial neighbor. Mexican songs have been so warmly received that they are in danger [heaven forfend!] of becoming naturalized. [Talk radio will save us!] Not only sentimental old-timers like ``La Golondrina,'' ``La Paloma,'' ``Cielito Lindo,'' ``Borrachita,'' ``Estrellita,'' and ``Sobre las Olas'' (Over the Waves), but also the more spirited ``Cucaracha,'' ``Rancho Grande,'' ``Perfidia,'' ``Frenesí,'' ``Cuatro Vidas,'' and a dozen other popular ``hits'' can be heard at almost any hour in the U.S.A. at the turn of a radio dial.''
Gringos knew they had hands and legs and brains. They were quite efficient at expressing their feelings with their feet--e.g., tap dancing--but there was one thing they ignored until the devilish maracas and sonajas started beating their jungle rhythm: and that was the flexibility of the hips and their magic power of expression. And all this fundamental change in the ``American way of moving'' has occurred only after dancing tangos, congas, and rumbas. Amigos gringos! Wait until you become acquainted with the pericón of Argentina and Uruguay, the Chilean cuecas, the marinera of Peru, the bambuco of Colombia.
I'm reminded that in 1963, when my mother started working as a research librarian at Allied Chemical, she was criticized by her library colleagues for the provocative, exaggerated way she swayed her hips when she walked. (We had just emigrated from Argentina, home of the tango -- which, if I may say so, does not really emphasize hip movement.)
In the block quote above, the only deviation from the italicization of the original is the emphasis I added to ``fundamental.'' Back around 1988, Carlo Jacoboni told me a story about a paper his group (in Modena, Italy) had submitted to an American or other English-language scientific journal. With the reviewer report came a suggestion that they look up the word fundament (which they had used) in a dictionary. It turns out that an important sense of the word -- the principal sense, to some people -- is, as the 1913 Webster's puts it, ``[t]he part of the body on which one sits; the buttocks; specifically (Anat.), the anus.''
We've been putting information about Latin textbooks and readers into the glossary in a haphazard but generally alphabetical manner. Following are the ones I have tracked down. The symbols [G] and [R] refer to grammar-intensive and readings-based approaches, respectively.
In addition to these, there are various textbooks in something close to the original sense of the word: books of texts to be read (for practice more than, or at least as much as, content). These are especially useful to supplement the textbooks that focus on grammar. They generally fall into two categories: books of texts all appropriate for some given level of (sub-fluent) proficiency in the language, and graded readers. Graded readers have texts or stories that are progressively more demanding, and they are often keyed to some teaching text.
In no particular order:
This reminds me of the Hebrew characters I saw stenciled on someone's laptop -- pn styyt. I figured it was Yiddish, particularly on account of the double yud. It turned out to be Hebrew for Penn State. (The guy told me it was Modern Hebrew, but that would seem to go without saying.)
Uvula? I'll look it up later.
Thomas Firth Jones's A Pair of Lawn Sleeves: A biography of William Smith (1727-1803) was published by the Chilton Book Company in 1972. It begins with this excerpt from the diary of John Adams (August 29, 1774):
A gentleman who returned into town with Mr. Paine and me in our coach undertook to caution us against two gentlemen particularly: one was Dr. Smith, the provost of the College, who is looking up to government for an American episcopate, and a pair of lawn sleeves.
In this entry I must note the following: In Spanish, a flexible tube used to pipe water, like a garden hose or a fire hose, is named after a different article of clothing than in English. Such a hose is mangera, from manga, meaning `sleeve.'
Wake up! Wake up!
You think you couldn't imagine a better natural alternative to Sominex, but in 1995 the Canadians took police action against a Spanish trawler to protect turbot stocks off their Atlantic coast.
It's scary: you think the dangers are downtown, and next moment your neighbors have a violent row.
And not just violence now, but sex too! According to research conducted in 1998 and released under Canada's Access to Information Act, the 10,000 employees at Department of Fisheries and Oceans (Ministère des Pêches et des Océans) paid an average of 70,000 visits per day to dating and pomography web sites. (Yes, that's an intentional typo, and sorry, I don't have more detailed statistics. Try this article in Salon.)
A friend of mine who worked at a major airline became just slightly concerned (so he put it) when he learned that the company's web fascist had surreptitiously compiled logs of the web sites visited by each employee. He needn't have worried (slightly) -- the general reaction was an overwhelming storm of slight concern, and the visit histories are reported to have been destroyed. Also, in 1999, the New York Times fired a number of employees at a northern Virginia facility, for exchanging non-PC and racy jokes and images. This was between consenting adults of various genders and a few races, you understand, but it was on company computers. The company kept a copy of every email that went through its system. I guess you're reading this glossary at home; now let's get back to the subject at hand, whatever it was.
Now, I recognize that some SBF Glossary users live in Canadian coastal fishing villages, and may even be or have been fishermen or fisherpersons, as the case may be. The following is for them; the rest of you go read something different.
Dear valued glossary user and former fishworker!
As you are aware, diminished Atlantic fish stocks have forced Fish Canada to impose certain restrictions, limits, moratoria -- all with the goal of replenishing stocks and ensuring the continued economic vitality of your village. Temporarily, you are forbidden to catch more than two (2) fish per month in season (January), but eventually, some of your descendants will be able to return to employment in the sea. Your government has a very sophisticated plan to preserve the economy of your village against that future day. In layman's terms, this is the plan: everyone will take in each other's washing. In order to implement this plan, many citizens who worked in the fishing industry must find new jobs. Employment Canada are diligently endeavouring to retrain you and your neighbours for satisfying work that utilises some of the skills you developed in your previous career.
Lobstermen: have you considered a career in hair styling?!
Some of you who have just started your new careers may have a little difficulty adjusting initially. A day at Davey Jones's Locks or Ahab's Persistent Wave ("Durn-near `Permanent' ") waiting for a customer may seem more tedious than waiting for fish to bite. Until you become better adjusted, you may find it hard to put aside frustration and get to sleep. ``Law of the Sea'' may not be a soothing thought. What you need is the gold standard of soporific prose. Here it is:
The word lay is a part of two closely related verbs that became confused in the last third of the twentieth century. Because decadent usage has become so common, even intelligent people like you use nontraditional conjugation and sound stupid and unlettered.
The two verbs have infinitive forms lie (as in ``lie down'') and lay. The relationship between the two is similar to that between rise and raise (with the same vowels and related meanings, so it's mnemonic). To lie and to rise describe what a subject does with his own body. They are intransitive (take no direct object) because they are implicitly reflexive. To lay and to raise describe what a subject does to some other object. They are transitive -- the direct object is what is moved by the subject.
Here are some examples of correct traditional usage:
Wait, wait, I'm working.
I would almost say that LBC is to British Judaism what the Hebrew Union College is to American Judaism: the rabbinical college of the Progressive movement. The relatively late creation of LBC probably reflects the small number of synagogues to be served in the UK. I suppose that until about 1933, British rabbinical students studied in Germany, much as a large fraction of serious American physics students would have done graduate study in Germany until then. One small difference between the US and UK situations is that there are two Progressive movements of comparable size in the UK, and only one (Reform) in the US. (The relatively small Reconstructionist movement in the US has its own rabbinical college.) Another interesting difference is that due to a certain degree of doctrinal tolerance in the UK, the Conservative movement got a very late start (1962) and remains small. LBC serves as the UK rabbinical college for that movement as well.
It can get particularly confusing if you create another entity and call it a centre too, like the Sternberg Centre, whatever that is. Apparently I was not the only one to find the hyphenated name slightly confusing. Sometime between 2000 and 2006, they apparently transitioned into using the shorter version exclusively, along with the correspondingly shortened domain name. As of 2006 you can still see vestiges of the old name links of related organizations. More substantive information about the college is at the LBC entry.
(I felt sure I'd already mentioned this somewhere in the glossary, but at this moment I can't find it.)
Chapter 9 of Debra Ginsberg's book Waiting is ``Food and Sex.'' She explains that it's ``almost too easy to identify the couples who will be headed to a beadroom [uh, I must have meant bedroom; I guess my mind wandered] as soon as dinner is over.... Waiters and waitresses train themselves to understand body language as carefully as the spoken word.'' The surefire sign is if she doesn't eat much of her dinner. ``There are also telling questions, like `Does it have a lot of bones?' Nobody wants to be seen picking apart a chicken if planning later to strip naked in front of a virtual stranger.'' I'm still thinking this one over, ruminating on it, chewing it over. For similar thoughts on salad, see NAVS.
A rock group called The Waitresses had their only hit with ``I Know What Boys Want.''
So back to this couple at Charlie Brown's on their first date. It was easy to see that they were going to go to bed... separately. He was talking about fishing gear and ``el bee eye,'' and she was making a superhuman effort to seem interested. This was not only their first date but their last date, though he apparently hadn't realized it yet.
Here, from Jane Austen's Mansfield Park, is a similar situation.
Maria, with only Mr. Rushworth [her wealthy fiancé] to attend to her, and doomed to the repeated details of his day's sport, good or bad, his boast of his dogs, his jealousy of his neighbours, his doubts of their [hunting] qualifications, and his zeal after poachers, subjects which will not find their way to female feelings without some talent on one side, or some attachment on the other, had missed Mr. Crawford grievously...
There's an actress called Kim Kardashian who did a couple of movies in 2007, following some television work in 2006 and 2007. In 2003 she had appeared in an episode or two of ``The Simple Life,'' an unreality show starring Paris Hilton. Perhaps she was best known for being the girlfriend of football player Reggie Bush for a while and then in 2008 for her part in ``Dancing with the Stars.'' (I don't know if she played a star or ``I'm with him'' on that, but she made it to round 10 and seemed to be in the entertainment news a lot.) Most of her gigs have consisted of playing herself on TV. In 2008 she starred in that role, in a show called ``Keeping Up with the Kardashians.'' Her costars included her sisters Khloe Alexandra Kardashian and Kourtney Mary Kardashian. Kim is Kimberly Noel Kardashian. Not as ambitious for consistency as Lyndon Baines Johnson, but at least the Kardashian parents didn't name any of their daughters Kandy Kelly.
International mail is divided into three general categories: LC, CP (parcel post), and AO (other things).
Um, um, there's this famous nineteenth-century novelist, um, ridiculously prolific, can't remember the name. Anthony Trollope! Anyway, in 1834 he began a distinguished career in the British Post Office. He quit in 1867, eight years before reaching the age of retirement, to devote himself to his writing career. His friend George Eliot feared at the time that it would lead him to ``excessive writing.'' She was right.
Trollope got his first position, as a minor clerk, through connections to the then-Secretary of the Post Office, Sir Francis Freeling. After a few years, Freeling was succeeded by an activist reformer, Rowland Hill. Trollope continued to be promoted within the post office, but as he rose he came to have an increasing number of conflicts with the Secretary. In 1861, he sought leave to visit North America -- the US Civil War would generate interest in a travel book and he could fulfill his ambition to follow in his mother's footsteps (she had written a famous and uncomplimentary North America book herself). Hill turned him down, but Trollope managed to get permission from the Postmaster General. Trollope found space in North America to praise Rowland Hill's ``wise audacity'' in campaigning (over twenty years before) for the ``penny post'' (uniform one-penny rate for all letters). (The penny-post scheme was accompanied by the introduction of gummed stamps for prepaying postage. In 1856, prepaid postage on letters was made mandatory. Prepaid postage stamps were adopted world wide, and since then stamp collectors have been keeping afloat the economies of small island nations that for all we know might be frauds upon the maps of oceans.) Incidentally, three of the 36 chapters in Trollope's North America were devoted to Canada, which is as close as one can come to the usual factor-of-ten rule, if you stick to a 36-chapter total. The two-volume work was a poorly organized, error-ridden success (on both sides of the pond), although Trollope didn't collect much in royalties from US distribution, since the US was something of an intellectual-property outlaw in those days. (And for a long time after. You could ask J.R.R. Tolkien about that, except that since he's dead, you might wait a long time for an answer.)
Trollope saw mail collection boxes of some sort in use in France in the 1830's. While working on special assignment in Jersey in the early 50's, he came up with the idea of cylindrical ``roadside letter boxes.'' The idea was adopted; Anthony Trollope is the father of the ``pillar box.''
Here's an introduction to Life Cycle Assessment from PRé Product Ecology Consultants.
The illustration at right is from NEC, which has a bit more information on-line.
Are you confused and at a loss? Good. Now remember: leadLESS.
The second level of subdivision (``subclasses'') is represented by a letter or by no letter. You know what I mean: QC for physics, QB for astronomy, QA for mathematics!?!?!, Q for ``Science (General).''
The next level of subdivision is a number greater than or equal to 1.
See also LCCS, DDC (Dewey), and UDC (not Dewey).
LC numbers begin with a one- or two-letter prefix. The first letter defines the primary class, and the second letter, if present, a subclass. Hey -- I already explained this!
It's interesting that the word science occurs in the designation of seven of the primary classes:
This correctly indicates that many things are called by names that use the word science but are not science and that, in particular, social science is not science. Psychology is in class B: ``Philosophy, Psychology, Religion.'' Specifically, Psychology is subclass BF, sandwiched between BD (``Speculative philosophy'') and BH (``Aesthetics'').
In photovoltaic systems, a cycle is a day: metal parts (heat sinks for the PV cells, concentrators for the solar radiation, and particularly solder joints) expand during the daylight hours and shrink during the night. [Do not carp that this expansion is a ``strain'' rather than a stress. They're tied together too intricately, and everyone understands what would be tedious to explain: The heat causes high stress under rigid (zero-strain) conditions. The metal strains (expands) to relieve the stress. An assembly of parts with different thermal expansivities, or different temperatures, or both, is liable to be constrained so as not to be able to release the stress entirely.] A PV system typically has a planned life of 20 or 30 years, or well over 10000 diurnal cycles. In this context, ``low cycle'' means fewer than 10000 cycles.
The initials L. C. M. are familiar to most of your readers, appended as they have been to so many exquisite poems and stories, the revelation of a cultured mind and sympathetic heart...
L.C.M. appears in a widely circulated 1884 photograph of twelve ``Eminent Women'' of America (Louisa May Alcott, Julia Ward Howe, and Harriet Beecher Stowe are the women in the picture still well known today). Her poetry ``was considered among the finest in the second half of the century'' according to Susan Coultrap-McQuin, Doing Library Business: American Women Writers in the Nineteenth Century (Chapel Hill: Un. of N. Car. Pr., 1990). Note that that particular half century included much of the poetry of Walt Whitman (1819-1891).
Sic transit gloria mundi.
Most of the information in this entry comes from A Sherwood Bonner Sampler, 1869-1884: What a Bright, Educated, Witty, Lively, Snappy Young Woman Can Say on a Variety of Topics, ed. Anne Razey Gowdy (Knoxville: Un. of Tenn. Pr., 2000). Sherwood Bonner was always young; she died of cancer in 1883, age 34.
For those of you who were confused by the word missive above, it means `letter,' the kind normally comprising rather than composing a number of words. Here at SBF World Strategy Planning, we strive to eliminate all ambiguity. (Indeed, we're right on schedule to achieve perfect and permanent clarity on June 16, 2000.) If we had used the synonym missile instead of missive, some of you might have thought we meant the projectile sort of missile. If we had used the word letter, some of you might very reasonably have supposed that a newspaper correspondent might be paid ten dollars for each alphabetic character of prose in 1876. Confederate dollars, sure.
The LCS used to be a best-of-five, back when each league of Major League Baseball (MLB) consisted of two divisions (East and West). Then, it was played between the two division winners (the teams with the best regular-season records in their respective divisions).
In 1995 there was an expansion and reorganization into three divisions. Since then, each league champion has been determined in an playoff series that consists of two rounds. The first round, a best-of-five (the ``Division Series'' -- NLDS or ALDS) reduces a field of four to the two. The four teams are the division winners and a wild-card team -- the second-place team (in its division) with the best record (among all teams in its league). In this system, the second round is the LCS, now a best-of-seven series between the division series winners.
See SW entry for related entries.
There is a related category called ``Critical Languages,'' which was invented during the Cold War to encompass languages that did not attract much attention for economic, literary, or whatever other reasons foreign languages might attract attention, but which were geopolitically important. In some schools, the imperative to teach ``critical languages,'' combined with the shortage of qualified instructors, has led to the use of unqualified instructors.
For example, LC50 for hydrofluoric acid is 456 ppm for mice inhaling the stuff for an hour. For rats inhaling for an hour, the LC50 is 1276 ppm. Three and four significant digits on numbers like these are completely fatuous. It's the kind of accuracy you might pretend to achieve if you massacred on the order of a million rats, to be sure the LC50 was 1276 and not 1277 ppm, even though you don't know two digits of accuracy on the HF (aq) molarity.
In the end, the thing you know best is the breed of rat you ordered to sacrifice on the altar of health science (Norway, or brown), and that HF is nasty stuff.
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