Monthly Archives: March 2005

That snowstorm ‘was nothing’

    When the landscape takes on the appearance of a scene from “Dr. Zhivago,” that’s proof there’s been a heavy snowfall.
     Mother’s Nature’s early spring attack on northern New Mexico two weeks ago, justifiably has been called the “storm of the century.” No fewer than three national television networks identified Las Vegas by name, telling the country we were under two feet of snow.

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Well, you don¹t have to shout

    On a wall of our house hangs an old telephone, a reminder of rural life around the middle of last century.
     Unlike today’s slim, two-ounce Nokia version of instant wireless communication, this big, bulky machine has a crank, a generator that sends out real shocks, two bells, an oak case, plastic mouth and ear pieces and cord as thick as a python.

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Why’s speech so formal?

    It was enjoyable writing recently about dialects that people employ, depending on the situation.
     More than a year ago, I wrote about mall-dwelling, braces-wearing teenie-boppers named Jennifer whose every third word is “like,” as in, “And I’m like duh,” or “Like let’s go eat like a hamburger.” or “Like what do you want to do today?” The most recent exposition on language featured my take on how most people talk. People do not speak the way they read. On a good day, with a stiff tail wind, a writer can plunk down about 14 words per minute. That same person will speak 140 words a minute.

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What’s wrong with changing mind?

    A few days ago, a co-worker, Miranda Cisneros, and I had a discussion while lunching at the Spic and Span. Amazingly, we got three topics to coalesce: the death penalty, the Bank of Las Vegas time and temperature sign and President Bush’s overseas policies.
     For today, at least, I have an opinion, which changed only recently and which is subject to change without notice.

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A burial ground on Highlands campus?

    Many creative pieces, known as master’s theses, often are doomed to remain forever in the stretch-wrap that entombed them when first placed on the library shelf.
     Some are esoteric (just like the word “esoteric”), in a language and on a subject so narrow that only devout followers in that field would conceivably enjoy reading it.
     A dozen years ago, my colleague at Highlands University, Dick Panofsky, observed that two identical VW Bugs in the parking lot of Mortimer Hall appeared to be of different heights. One seemed five inches shorter than its twin.

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