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-   -   Curiosities in the public record (http://www.lawtalkers.com/forums/showthread.php?t=111)

pretermitted_child 04-01-2003 03:10 PM

Punctuation
 
Even the humble apostrophe is not safe [spree: Arianna's smiling mug]!

pretermitted_child 04-01-2003 04:37 PM

Since we are on the subject of apostrophes . . .
 
. . . what about its southern cousin, the unassuming comma?

I have no problems with the comma; in fact, I can't use enough of them. I especially love the serial comma, which delimits so very nicely and unobtrusively. But it has been consistently banished from the papers of some. Why? The serial comma has been blessed by Strunk and White [1], and has also been the subject of an "un-negotiable" ukase [2] from William F. Buckley, Jr. who deems its omission a capital offense.


[1] WILLIAM STRUNK, JR. & E. B. WHITE, THE ELEMENTS OF STYLE 2 (4th ed. 2000).
[2] WILLIAM F. BUCKLEY, JR. , BUCKLEY: THE RIGHT WORD 82 (Samuel S. Vaughan ed., 1996).

NYT_Junkie 04-01-2003 05:24 PM

I don't mind the occasional William Safire column, but god help you if you start quoting the Bluebook.

:bang:


- NYT (I hate that wretched publication) Junkie

pretermitted_child 04-01-2003 08:09 PM

I hear ya
 
Quote:

Originally posted by NYT_Junkie
I don't mind the occasional William Safire column, but god help you if you start quoting the Bluebook.

:bang:


- NYT (I hate that wretched publication) Junkie


I hate the Bluebook[1] as well; I didn't crack one open until after my 1L year. My 1L legal writing instructor had us internalize the ALWD[2] manual, which is supposedly the enlightened alternative.

The index of the Bluebook tells a fascinating anthropological story (when I am not absolutely frustrated by it). While the index of the ALWD manual is slightly less counterintuitive, I frankly can't tell which one is less evil.


[1] THE BLUEBOOK: A UNIFORM SYSTEM OF CITATION R. 15.7(f), at 114 (Columbia Law Review Ass'n et al. eds., 17th ed. 2000).
[2] Association of Legal Writing Directors & Darby Dickerson, ALWD Citation Manual (Aspen L. & Bus. 2000).

coup_d'skek 04-02-2003 12:03 AM

writer's attic?
 
there's a word that sounds like "garret" that's like some little room at least sometimes used to describe a poet's lair. Isn't there? If there is, could you let me know what it is? Not remembering is buging me.

dtb 04-02-2003 10:41 AM

writer's attic?
 
Quote:

Originally posted by coup_d'skek
there's a word that sounds like "garret" that's like some little room at least sometimes used to describe a poet's lair. Isn't there? If there is, could you let me know what it is? Not remembering is buging me.
I'm sure this isn't it, because it doesn't sound like garret, but what pops into my mind is "atelier".

(I know, I know, that's not it...)

:confused:

coup_d'skek 04-03-2003 12:14 AM

garrett room, apartment, studio
 
Quote:

Originally posted by dtb
:confused:
I think the term is garrett room, garrett apartment, or garrett studio, not that I can find it in my dictionary.

Garrett Room, n., Small room in attic of residence used as an artist studios in late 19th century Paris.

Greedy,Greedy,Greedy 04-03-2003 12:52 PM

writer's attic?
 
Quote:

Originally posted by coup_d'skek
there's a word that sounds like "garret" that's like some little room at least sometimes used to describe a poet's lair. Isn't there? If there is, could you let me know what it is? Not remembering is buging me.
Garret is the word. It shows up in my Oxford American Dictionary as "n, an attic, especially a poor one. " I think it's from the French.

pretermitted_child 04-03-2003 06:58 PM

Curiosities in the public record
 
Check out The Poetry of D.H. Rumsfeld [spree: a pensive Rummy and bad poetry]

My favorite is:

The Unknown
As we know,
There are known knowns.
There are things we know we know.
We also know
There are known unknowns.
That is to say
We know there are some things
We do not know.
But there are also unknown unknowns,
The ones we don't know
We don't know.

—Feb. 12, 2002, Department of Defense news briefing

pretermitted_child 04-03-2003 08:35 PM

Bad poetry abounds.
 
The previous post reminds me of Fisher v. Lowe, 333 N.W.2d 67 (Mich.App. 1983), in which the entire opinion is written in rhyming couplets. What makes this opinion interesting, besides the bad poetry, is that it provides a stark illustration of the primary difference between Westlaw headnotes and Lexis headnotes: those of the former result from some -- at times, substantial -- amount of rewriting/processing of those parts they reference within an opinion, while those of the latter arise out of cut-and-paste operations, wherein the text is left unadulterated. Indeed, when looking at Fisher in the West reporter, one readily notices that the headnotes, as well as the summary, mimic the rhyming couplet scheme of the opinion with loving care. Lexis, by contrast, hasn't been as creative; it has only a solitary non-rhyming headnote, cut-and-pasted from a footnote.


-pc

tmdiva 04-03-2003 10:36 PM

Bad headline
 
A headline on the Oregonian the other day talked about how US troops were moving "perceptively" closer to Baghdad. ARGH.

tm

coup_d'skek 04-04-2003 12:47 AM

writer's attic?
 
Quote:

Originally posted by Greedy,Greedy,Greedy
Garret is the word. It shows up in my Oxford American Dictionary as "n, an attic, especially a poor one. " I think it's from the French.
I used to think the OED was extravagant overkill, I may have to revise my opinion.

pretermitted_child 04-04-2003 12:54 AM

Bad headline
 
Quote:

Originally posted by tmdiva
A headline on the Oregonian the other day talked about how US troops were moving "perceptively" closer to Baghdad. ARGH.

tm
Ah, yes, the old using-the-wrong-word-to-sound-more-intelligent trick.

What gets me ballistic is the phrase "between you and I," which is apparently seared in the collective conscious, most likely through the concerted efforts of careless 4th grade teachers who tell their students that "between me and you" sounds impolite and barbaric without telling them that it is neverthless grammatically correct. So the "me" and "you" get reversed so as to avoid sounding impolite, and the "me" gets replaced with "I" so as to avoid sounding barbaric. Compounding the problem are songs like Life is a Highway by Tom Cochrane, which managed to get unjustifiably frequent airplay many years ago:

Life is a highway.
I want to ride it all night long.
If you're going my way,
I want to drive it all night long.
There was a distance between you and I.
A misunderstanding once, but now,
We look it in the eye.
(emphasis added)

pretermitted_child 04-04-2003 02:47 AM

writer's attic?
 
Quote:

Originally posted by Greedy,Greedy,Greedy
Garret is the word. It shows up in my Oxford American Dictionary as "n, an attic, especially a poor one. " I think it's from the French.
(emphasis added)

Quote:

Originally posted by coup_d'skek
I used to think the OED was extravagant overkill, I may have to revise my opinion.
(emphasis added)


Perhaps your opinion needs no revision, unless the Oxford American Dictionary is also a 22-volume behemoth like its English cousin.

Atticus Grinch 04-04-2003 11:15 AM

Bad headline
 
Quote:

Originally posted by pretermitted_child
Ah, yes, the old using-the-wrong-word-to-sound-more-intelligent trick.
And its cousin, the butchering-a-foreign-word-to-sound-more-cultured trick. Like people who pronounce "forte" with two syllables ("for-tay"), when the French word is pronounced simply "fort."

It divides humanity into three distinct classes. At the top, people who use the word with one syllable. Then people who use it to impress but mispronounce it, with unintentionally bourgeois results. Then, at the bottom, the people who don't know what it means anyway.

Alas, it's the people in the top class who have to suffer the odd and pitying looks, like they're the stupid social climbers who overreached their educations.


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