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Daily Archives: April 20th, 2017

© Tatiana Ayazo/
Imagine you’re a dictionary editor. For eight hours a day, five days a week, every week until the heat death of the universe or the day human beings stop speaking English (whichever comes first), it’s your job to ensure that your trusted reference book keeps pace with the relentlessly evolving definitions of our ceaselessly expanding English language. ‘No sweat,’ you think, picking up two boxes of citations for words beginning with the letter R. ‘Where do I start?’ That’s when you realize these boxes of citations, hundreds of scraps of paper showing each word in every possible context, are all for a single word. A three-letter word—the most complicated, multifaceted word in the English language.You might think it’s absurd (and maybe it is), but Oxford English Dictionary editors recently revealed that ‘run’ has indeed become the single word with the most potential meanings in all of English, boasting no fewer than 645 different usage cases for the verb form alone. The copious definitions of ‘run’ featured in the OED’s upcoming third edition begin with the obvious, ‘to go with quick steps on alternate feet,’ then proceed to run on for 75 columns of type. This entry, in all its girth, took one professional lexicographer nine months of research to complete. How could three little letters be responsible for so much meaning?
Context is everything. Think about it: When you run a fever, for example, those three letters have a very different meaning than when you run a bath to treat it, or when your bathwater subsequently runs over and drenches your cotton bath runner, forcing you to run out to the store and buy a new one. There, you run up a bill of $85 because besides a rug and some cold medicine, you also need some thread to fix the run in your stockings and some tissue for your runny nose and a carton of milk because you’ve run through your supply at home, and all this makes dread run through your soul because your value-club membership runs out at the end of the month and you’ve already run over your budget on last week’s grocery run when you ran over a nail in the parking lot and now your car won’t even run properly because whatever idiot runs that Walmart apparently lets his custodial staff run amok and you know you’re letting your inner monologue run on and on but, God—you’d do things differently if you ran the world. Maybe you should run for office,to run through the whole list of definitions? Alas, to read all 645 meanings you’ll have to wait for the next edition of the Oxford English Dictionary. The print run is expected in 2037.

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The campaign trail allows for many quotes and statements that sound good at the time and creates a narrative to receive votes. The many styles of campaign rhetoric  and promises have consequences such as delivery. The confidence of the voters is what gets votes and it appears that confidence is eroding. When you have headliners like Sean Spacer, Kellyanne Conwoman and Devin Nuneofus, it is hard to be taken seriously. The first 80 plus days have seen much ado over nothing except executive orders that don’t do much as they do not immediately become effective. The end game on these touted signings is more of a photo op than a real action. The downside is that the pinch of these orders will haunt us all for possibly decades. The repeal of the executive orders of the previous administration without a detailed look at the orders is a potential head on run into a brick wall without a helmet. These types of actions appear to be the methodology of the Trump administration. It is apparently the business man’s method of action, that is to shoot from the hip with just a smattering of information with no thought to the future effects of those actions. There appears to be some evidence of Trump pulling out of deals or activities if they do not progress the way he wants. The line of thought seems to be based on news summaries and semi solid information rather than solid information from staffers who are supposed to be available to verify or corroborate information. What have now is indeed a “failure to communicate”. Meanwhile the Dupublican Congress is busy in the background undermining the trust and health of the voters whom they so often cite as the reason for their actions.

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