Here's a link to Maureen Dowd's column in the New York Times (http://www.nytimes.com/2009/09/30/opinion/30dowd.html?em). The bloggers are already quoting her report of William Safire's advice: "If White House officials wouldn’t call you back, leave them a single-word message about what you wanted to talk about: 'Malfeasance.'"
Konyvmives Konykiado was fined HUF 500 thousand (approx. EUR 1700) by the GVH (the Hungarian Competition Authority) for the deception of consumers. The organization failed to indicate in its publication Hungarian Explanatory Concise Dictionary that the book contained a significant number of archaic expressions, based on previous dictionaries, and that it explained headwords several times with old-fashioned wording rather than in contemporary language. For more details, visit http://www.gvh.hu/gvh/alpha?do=2&st=2&pg=133&m5_doc=6015.
The Pulitzer prize-winning columnist for The New York Times, formerly a speechwriter for President Richard Nixon, died Sunday, 27 September 2009 at age 79. William Safire had been a member of the DSNA since 1983. Here's a link to the Times obituary: http://www.nytimes.com/2009/09/28/us/28safire.html.
"Anti-drug officers in the Caribbean have read between the lines to intercept a disguised shipment of cocaine destined for Europe. The Dominican Republic authorities found several packets of the drug sewn in the lining of dictionaries. The consignment was seized at a post office in Santo Domingo ready to be mailed to an address in Madrid. The country's National Drug Control Agency said the package contained "a white powder that appears to be cocaine." Attempts to bring to book those responsible may not prove easy though, despite the find. The NDCA officers said a local return address on the package was almost certainly bogus. It is the third time in two months that drugs have been found sewn into book covers or cards bound for Spain." From SkyNews at news.sky.com.
I considered tagging this story "industry news" but I think not.
According to the BBC: "The news marks the end of a 200 year association with Scotland for the dictionary. Managers said they could not find a buyer for Chambers titles. It is planned parts of the business, Chambers and Harrap, which publish bilingual dictionaries, will be separated. Both had been hit by the steep decline in sales of dictionaries and reference books, with many people now getting information via the internet." For the rest of the story, visit http://tinyurl.com/mvfezb.
We'll continue our celebration of the great Cham's 300th birthday (coming up on Friday!) with a link to Johnson's poem, translated into English. All practising lexicographers should read it, and probably tack a copy over their desks. Here's the peroration:
What then remains? Must I, in slow decline, To mute inglorious ease old age resign? Or, bold ambition kindling in my breast, Attempt some arduous task? Or, were it best, Brooding o'er lexicons to pass the day, And in that labour drudge my life away?
The 2011 Biennial Meeting of the Dictionary Society of North America will be held at McGill University in Montreal, Quebec, Canada. The program will begin with a reception on the evening of Wednesday, 8 June and will run through Saturday, 11 June. McGill Library’s Rare Books and Special Collections Department will be preparing an exhibit based on their lexicography holdings, which include early North American First Nations language dictionaries and glossaries, and mono- and bilingual works in French and English. Amenities at the conference site include a laundry, gym, pool and grocery; the hotel is near a huge mountain park and within easy walking distance of many restaurants. Free time will be built into the schedule to allow attendees to explore Montreal.
More information will be forthcoming as the conference date approaches.
More in our occasional series on DSNA and the popularizing of dictionary studies:
Michael Sheehan hosts a weekly radio call-in show in Traverse City, Michigan. The show, "Words to the Wise," is about language, and some of the most frequent questions are about words -- their meaning and origins. Michael writes, "I constantly tout dictionaries as marvelous repositories of information.What is most unusual about the program is that it is on AM radio. All of the other language programs that I have heard are on FM radio -- usually, PBS outlets. So I hit a strongly blue collar or retiree audience."
The show airs every Tuesday morning from 9:00 - 10:00 EST on AM-580. It can be heard anywhere in the world in real time on streaming audio. Simply go to wtcmradio.com and click on "Listen Now."A limited number of podcasts can be heard at any time by going to wtcmradio.com and clicking on "The Ron Jolly Show," and then "Words to the Wise."