" /> Glorfindel of Gondolin: September 2006 Archives

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September 26, 2006

Emergency medicine...

... can sometimes make a difference. This story demands a link.

Notice, though, that the key fact here is that an otolaryngologist "was miraculously in the building." Miraculous might be the right word, because for financial reasons many emergency departments don't have access to on-call specialists when they need it.

September 22, 2006

Thoughts about Wendell Berry...

. . . . but not by me.

Rick Saenz over at Dry Creek Chronicles has this to say about the agrarianism of Wendell Berry.

Ulterior Epicure has moved

The Ulterior Epicure has moved from blogspot -- be sure to update your blogrolls.

I've had the pleasure of dining with UE and look forward to doing it again.

September 19, 2006

Fresh Tolkien book

Houghton Mifflin will publish a new work by JRR Tolkien this spring.

I'm chomping at the bit, tugging at the leash, drooling down my shirt. I'm not worried that Tolkien never finished the story during his lifetime -- if Christopher Tolkien does as good a job editing "The Children of Hurin" as he's done with the multivolume history of the Lord of the Rings and Unfinished Tales, this new book is going to be **amazing**.

September 12, 2006

There's something about Juan Cole

Don't get me wrong -- Juan Cole is certainly an interesting and provocative blogger. But the only reason I can see for this obsessive preoccupation with his job applications in the National Review Online is that Cole's criticism of the Bush administration's middle east policies have struck a nerve with some of the more unhinged Bush apologists.

Or maybe it's the accusations that a "neoconservative cabal" has it in for Cole that has struck a nerve.

Or, maybe, it's just that National Review Online has such shitty journalistic standards that Jonah Goldberg isn't the only hack that NRO will publish. Think about it: here's a whole article about how Cole's becoming one of the four finalists for a professorship at Duke, after a search that "stretched across disciplines," somehow entitles Cole's critics to an "apology."

How utterly bizarre.

September 01, 2006

"Bears" or "Bear"?

I bet you didn't know this, but there are several good reasons to use "bears" as the plural form of "bear."

The dictionary doesn't seem to favor one over the other -- it lists the plural form as either "bears" or "bear" without taking sides. But we should take a stand, and we should stand with "bears."

  • When you say "bears," it's easy to understand that you're talking about several individual animals, each of whom is a bear. But when you say "bear," we can't tell whether you're referring to the whole animal as it shuffles through the forest, or if you really meant to say something like bear meat. Think of how chefs talk about food: lion steaks and alligator burgers. Think about the hunter's vernacular: I hunt tiger. Poor bears!

  • Bears are not herd animals. Etymologically, some argue that the plural form of "bear" is analogous to the plurals of deer, sheep, and buffalo. Deer, sheep, and buffalo have the same word for both the singular and the plural, and they're herd animals. Bears are not herd animals. Saying "bear" suggests that you don't know anything about how the animal known as a bear actually lives.

Language is a powerful thing. So are bears. Let's make sure that we speak of them properly.