What can you read?

About once a month–which is considerably less frequently than either of my parents probably did–I spend part of my lunch break reading the dictionary.  On our recent vacation, with the walks we took under the instruction of a Scottish guide book, we fell over the word “jink” and needed help to define it enough to follow the directions.  When I mentioned this to a coworker (a fellow with a rich vocabulary but one that had been lacking this one, too), he offered me “deke” in return.

Deke” and “jink” have lots in common, I now know, having had my dictionary lunch today. (Yes, I could have looked them up any old time but the point, in part, is to spend some browsing time with words, their meanings, and thus some free-range ideas).

On the other hand, the dictionary wasn’t going to help Bob this morning as he wrestled with the sports section over the report on the activities of the Major Junior Hockey League. He needs to rework his past practices with some words, like “major” and “junior.” Probably a year with the local sports news will be the equivalent of a vocabulary-centred chiropodic adjustment.

But while there’s a whole lot of info out there that we can read  in Canada, broadcast access to some info resources is marginalized.  The issue of compromised access to Al Jazeera has been going on for most of this century.  Comments that come when editorials, such as the one linked here, find print are more interesting than the editorial itself.  The typically polite Canadian has a topic over which to show some temper.  Not in their demands for a satellite access offering in their consumer package, but about the rightness or wrongness of other Canadians expressing opinions.

It’s the kind of dialogue which, if I came across it in person on a  crowded floor, I’d jink. As reading material, however, it pulls me out of the muskeg of complacency.


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