June 2012 Issue

So here’s the June Issue, which contains 18 columns (rather than the usual 12 or so) to make up for my tardiness. And thanks to all the folks who have contributed by subscribing lately. It would be awesome if more of you folks did. But it would also be great if you’d just send in some questions, since they are, after all, the raw material I need to run this circus, and the more I have the easier it is.

And now a depressing explanation of where the May Issue went:

So, I had the May issue almost set to go last month when everything went to the damnation bowwows. The car (singular, 1997 vintage) died. The dogs (plural, elderly) both got sick. The temperature went into the low 90s, and then things got really depressing, because my ms decided to prove that they don’t call it “progressive” for the hell of it, specifically by making it damn near impossible for me to walk across the room. I tell my legs to work, but they don’t listen. The foot drop (inability to flex your ankle, a skill fairly central to walking) I’d been dealing with in my left foot for five years has now developed in my right as well, which makes walking at all a real adventure. Your feet just sort of flop around loosely and you clomp along like a marionette. And if I do manage to hold something in my left hand, I now find that I can’t make my hand let go (which really creeps me out).

More importantly, for purposes of this web site, I discovered that even brief (like, five minutes) exposure to the heat is enough to make my vision blur to the point that I cannot see much of anything. It’s like looking through a lens when someone is racking it in and out of focus. And it’s qualitatively worse than it was a year ago. And yadda yadda yadda.

So that happened. I’m still a lot luckier than a lot of people with ms, and way luckier than folks with worse things. But everything takes much longer than it used to, and so that’s what happened to May.

And now, on with the show…

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2 comments on this post.
  1. Anders Lotsson:

    ” literally no grasp whatsoever” – literally??

  2. admin:

    Given that she misunderstood the basic categories she was employing (conflating the two kinds of rules) and consequently mis-characterizing the views of people she was criticizing, yes. She was not merely missing some finer points; she was confusing the Lone Ranger with Tonto. Her review was delusional; she was writing while laboring under a fundamental misunderstanding of “who, what, when, where and why.” So, using “grasp” in the established metaphorical sense of “general understanding,” I think “literally” is appropriate.

    updated: Merriam-Webster’s Dictionary of English Usage on “literally” (click the first result shown)

    plus this post from Language Log

    and, of course, the classic xkcd. (not to be taken personally, of course).

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