July 7, 2012
A very interesting reversal of words is in process. A "gauntlet" is the double-line of people that a supplicant for, say, knighthood had to run through while being hit and poked by sticks or whatever. a "gantlet" was a glove, usually of the iron sort worn with a suit of armor.
So one would throw down the gantlet to challenge someone to a duel. But now throwing down the gauntlet has become the more common expression. An understandable confusion, and one that is come to be acceptable to most dictionaries. But today I ran across someone who was running the gauntlet of criticism for something, and a reader corrected him to "gantlet." And so the words are changing places.
July 1, 2012
A couple of weeks ago a play version of The Infernal Device was performed at the Moreau Center for the Arts. Saint Mary’s College, Notre Dame University. I'll let you know how it went when I find out. I'd also like to get a copy of the script -- written by the director of the program -- to see what parts of the book he considered important and which he thought he could drop.
July 1, 2012
About a decade ago, maybe more, a factory burned down somewhere in New England. It took a year to rebuild. For that whole year the owner of the factory kept paying his employees their full salaries until the plant reopened. I remember hearing an interview with the owner - I don't remember his name,or what the factory made, but I remember that the interviewer asked the owner why he kept paying out these salaries. The owner shrugged. "How many suits can I wear?" he replied.
Wouldn't it be nice if just one CEO would turn down his $25 million salary and say, "Just give me five million, and use the rest to put 350 people back to work." He'd be a hero -- and he'd still have five million dollars.