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I Take Too Long

September 13th, 2001 - 4:02 p.m.

I'm Currently Avoiding:

I honestly need to stop writing these things at strange times of the day. Key word there being "Day". The last one, I finished at like 7 am, I'm writing this one in the afternoon, and I know there were other ones which were written in the morning/afternoon period. I shouldn't be doing that. I like darkness damnit! Boy am I lazy, or maybe I just multi-task entirely too much, seeing as how it's been about two hours since the time up there and I've only got all the copied and pasted stuff plus a paragraph written, if that. So yeah, yesterday, today, and tomorrow...

September 12 is ... National Pet Memorial Day and National Chocolate Milkshake Day (hmm. Meep!)

September 13 is ... Defy Superstition Day (Makes sense at least, unlike a lot of these other days.)

September 14 is ... National Cream-filled Donut Day (Yum?)

And then there's this...


eponymous (adj. ih-PAH-nuh-muss or eh-PAH-nuh-muss)

1 : of, relating to, or being one for whom something is

named or is believed to be named

2 : being or having a name that is based on or derived

from the name of one associated with it

It's no coincidence that eponymous has to do with naming -- it comes to us from the Greek adjective eponymos, which is itself from onyma, meaning name. Onyma has lent its name to a number of English words, including synonymous, pseudonym, and anonymous. Traditionally, an eponymous person or thing (i.e., an eponym) might be a mythical ancestor or totem believed to be the source of a clan's name. Today, however, eponymous more typically refers to such individuals as the front man of "Theo's Trio" or the owner of "Sally's Restaurant" (Theo and Sally, respectively, of course). The things that are named for such name-providers are also eponymous. For example, we can speak of "the eponymous 'Ed Sullivan Show'" as well as "the eponymous Ed Sullivan."

peruse (v. puh-ROOZ)

1 a: to examine or consider with attention and in detail

b : to look over or through in a casual or cursory manner

2 : read; especially : to read over in an attentive or

leisurely manner

Peruse has long been a literary word, used by such famous authors as Shakespeare, Wordsworth, and Tennyson, and it tends to have a literary flavor even in our time. Peruse can suggest paying close attention to something, but it can also simply mean to read. The read sense, which is not especially new and was in fact included by Samuel Johnson in his 1755 dictionary, has drawn some criticism over the years for being too broad. Some commentators have recommended that peruse be reserved for reading with great care and attention to detail. But the fact remains that peruse is often used in situations where a simple read definition could be easily substituted. It may suggest either an attentive read or a quick reading.

totem (n. TOH-tum)

1 : an object (as an animal or plant) serving as the emblem

of a family or clan; also : something usually carved or painted to represent such an object

2 : something that serves as an emblem or revered symbol

Totem comes to us from Ojibwa, an Algonquian language spoken by an American Indian people from the regions around Lake Superior. The most basic form of the word in Ojibwa is believed to be ote, but 18th-century English speakers encountered it as ototeman (his totem), which became our totem. In its most specific sense, totem refers to an emblematic depiction of an animal or plant that gives a family or clan its name and that often serves as a reminder of its ancestry. The term is also used broadly for any thing or person having particular emblematic or symbolic importance. The related adjective totemic describes something that serves as a totem, that depicts totems (totemic basketry, for example), or that has the nature of a totem.

sic (adv. SIK or SEEK)

: intentionally so written -- used after a printed word or

passage to indicate that it is intended exactly as printed or to indicate that it exactly reproduces an original

The adverb sic, usually enclosed in brackets, is a word editors use in the reproduction of someone else's speech or writing to indicate that an unexpected form exactly reproduces the original and is not a copier's mistake. Sic comes from Latin, in which it means so or thus. Though it's a useful tool, some usage commentators feel it is bad manners to use a sic to needlessly call attention to someone's error or to deride the language of a less-educated person.

So, what did I want to rant about? I think I was going to talk about what happened on the 11th, or the aftermath maybe, some more, and then I was going to rant about something else. I think I'll rant about something else first b/c if I do the serious stuff first, and then go into a rant about this particular topic, it's just going to seem petty. Like my concerns are more important than those facing the nation, or something. Although, I guess it's my diary so I can be petty if I want to. That doesn't mean I'm not going to rant first however. Then I think there will be a break for the songs of the days and then the more serious stuff.

Yeah. So what did I want to rant about? *glances over to my things for a clue* Ohhhh...that. Bulkpacks & textbooks, especially bulkpacks though, are The single biggest ripoff a college student has to deal with. Bulkpacks, for those who haven't heard of them, are various papers a teacher wishes their students to have to read over the semester. Instead of having their students buy 14 books (maybe more) just to read a chapter, more or less, out of each book, they compile the things they want their students to read, and take that material to a copy place. The copy place then makes an appropriate number of copies for the number of people in the class and binds the material together, then sells the "bulkpack" to the students. These bulkpacks are completely useless and a huge waste of money. Admittedly, they're convenient, but the teacher could just as easily run a copy off of everything and just hand it out. That would probably cut into their paper budget or something however, so they make students actually *Pay* for these things.

The main reason not to like these stupid things is they have no redeeming value whatsoever. At least with textbooks (which are also horrendously expensive) you can sell them back at the end of the semester or year and get a measly percentage of your expenditures back. With bulkpacks however, there are no refunds, returns, or exchanges so once you buy it you're pretty much locked into taking that particular class or you'll have wasted your money for no reason at all. Not only that, but since teachers change their minds about the courses they teach and what specific works they want to study during a semester, the material in the bulkpacks are only useful for the particular semester in which that course is given, with that specific professor, and in that specific year. Even the same course taught the next year by the same teacher won't necessarily use the same documents to teach their class. Basicall, there is no chance in hell that you'll be able to sell your bulkpack to someone else taking the course next semester or year. So in conclusion, I've basically burned $120 of my money, only I don't get any warmth from it. Maybe I can use the bulkpacks for toilet paper when the semester's over with. That's some expensive toilet paper though.

Songs of the Days: "Time in a Bottle" by Jim Croce (It seems appropriate and I've been listening to too much classic rock lately) & "American Pie" by Don McLean (I hate the Madonna version, again with the classic rock excuse, and someone was playing it on the piano yesterday.)

You know what? I said I'd talk about what happened some more now, but it's 7:15 and I'm hungry, so we'll just have to continue this discussion with myself next time.

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