aftermath

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Posts Tagged ‘word

“So-Called”

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My so-called friends have fallen under a spell
They look me squarely in the eye and they say, “All is well”
       —Bob Dylan, Precious Angel

Calling it ‘so-called’ all too often makes it so.

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Written by macheide

21 April 2015 at 4:00 am

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While Meant

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Meantime life outside goes on
All around you

     —Bob Dylan, It’s Alright, Ma (I’m Only Bleeding)

Today’s edition for Garner’s Usage Tip of the Day e-mail subscription service (see LawProse.org) covers “meantime; meanwhile.” Garner basically covers the basic: “People use ‘in the meantime’ and ‘meanwhile’ to perform essentially the same adverbial function.”

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Written by macheide

16 April 2015 at 5:23 pm

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Of Measurements

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measurement n. 1. The act of measuring or the process of being measured. —TheFreeDictionary
measured adj. 1. Determined by measurement. —TheFreeDictionary

In honor of Pi Day of the Century, let’s play math nerd with that. First, we’ll take the “or” in the first definition at face value, allowing us to use the second part of that definition on its own: measurement can mean the process of being measured. Next we’ll perform a simple substitution, as is so common in our own definitions, giving us: measurement can mean the process of being determined by measurement. Which, by further extension, yields: measurement can mean the process of being determined by the process of being determined by the process of being determined by the process of being determined by . . . measurement, . . . which can mean the process . . . . Oh, hello there, π! Fancy you showing up.

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Written by macheide

11 March 2015 at 3:42 pm

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Sincerely OK

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‘okay, I have had enough, what else can you show me?’
                      —Bob Dylan, It’s Alright, Ma (I’m Only Bleeding)

Merriam Webster recently posted an interesting video clip on the “bizarre origins of the world’s most recognized word”: okay. OK. Like, isn’t that what Rose would say that is?

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Written by macheide

3 February 2015 at 4:34 pm

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Work Bucket

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practical lessons in actuarial scienceOne of the key items on my work bucket list, which holds a fast-dwindling collection of things I wish to accomplish before my work life is over:

Click on the image of this book’s title page, then enlarge that if need be, and you’ll find this second edition to have been published by The Spectator Company in 1905! As in, 39 years older than the Society of Actuaries. As in, the book is some 13 years older than our dear neighbor, who celebrates his 97th birthday next week. As in, if the book had been born in the year it was published, then it would now be 10 years older than the last age given in the mortality table given in the book!

Which if nothing else demonstrates that good word survives its own author’s breath. And does still get itself read. And put to good use. ‘And “Miles” to go before I sleep . . . ’

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Written by macheide

25 January 2015 at 9:22 am

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Iff You See Her Say Hello

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I doubt I’m improperly disclosing too much about my work to tell that I was recently involved on a project that included discussion about whether a piece of emerging regulatory guidance might want to use the word “iff.” In the sense of the second definition stated at my link given here: the mathematical term of art. I had to smile: one of my favorite hobbies involves collecting iffs.

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Written by macheide

15 November 2014 at 5:44 am

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