Silent Sunday


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I Wouldn’t Go to the Trouble

Last week I was in Beijing and when I went shopping I wanted to get a couple watches I’d bought fixed. One needed to be sized, one ran slowly and the other, the most expensive ($50) had died two months after I got it. The first two I bought in March and the third I got at the Pearl Market and the third at the market behind it in the sub-basement.

While I don’t expect these watches to last forever, I do expect a $50 watch to last at least 4 months.

Getting the first two watches fixed was no problem. The shop owner was pleasant and obliging. So I wound up buying a couple gift watches to boot.

Then I went to get the third watch fixed. I would have been happy if the shop owners:

  1. fixed the watch
  2. gave me a new watch
  3. returned my money

I first looked at the watches that were just like mine and asked about the price to make sure it was worth $50. That was confirmed. Then I explained my problem. Rather than saying how they could make the situation better, the dour sales clerk asserted that I hadn’t bought the watch there. “You must have gotten the watch somewhere else.”

You’ve got to be kidding. I certainly don’t have the time or inclination to come to this shop to fix a problem with a watch i’d bought somewhere else. I told her I certainly bought it there. She kept insisting I’d gotten it somewhere else. I held my ground and eventually told her her claim was a lie. A tourist was browsing her wares as we went back and forth. He smiled knowingly and soon left.

Then this dour, unpleasant liar relented and her husband repaired the watch. It was easy for him. He just replaced the battery and now I’ve got a working watch. I’ll never go back there. If they had promptly fixed the watch I would have. I realize batteries die, but a new watch should come with a battery that’ll last a few months at least.

I later went to look at shoes before leaving. As I walked by the bad watch shop, I saw a group of six or so tourists heading towards the bad watch shop. I shared my story and told them about the good watch shop in the Pearl Market. I hope they went there. I did convince them not to shop with the bad watch shop.

Word of the Week

[‘ A person whose knowledge is only superficial, esp. one who makes much of it; a pretender to learning.’]
Pronunciation: Brit. /ˈsʌɪəlɪst/,  U.S. /ˈsaɪələst/
Etymology: <  post-classical Latin sciolus (see sciolous adj.) + -ist suffix. Compare sciolus n.
 A person whose knowledge is only superficial, esp. one who makes much of it; a pretender to learning.

1612  A. Hopton Concordancy of Yeares sig. A8v_ (note) , All whose workes fairly written..were, by religious pretending Sciolists, damn’d as diuelish.
1656  T. Blount Glossographia To Rdr. sig. A4, Every..homebred Sciolist being at coyn and innovate new Words.
1705  W. Lewis tr. E. Herbert Antient Relig. Gentiles x. 131 But the inquisitive Sciolist..will endeavour to find out second Causes for those things which proceed directly and solely from the most wise Counsel of God.
1778  V. Knox Ess. I. xvi. 107 Contemptible sciolists, who called themselves theatrical critics.
1817  S. T. Coleridge Biographia Literaria I. iii. 58 In proportion as a still greater diffusion of literature shall produce an increase of sciolists.
1880  A. C. Swinburne Study of Shakespeare 18 The last resource of an empiric, the last refuge of a sciolist.
1939 Sewanee Rev. 47 112 Non-Shakespearean sciolists put the burden of proof that William Shakespeare wrote the plays on the shoulders of acknowledged Shakespeareans.
1973 Financial Times 5 June 20/5 Any identification of the Smithian system with this point of view is a sure sign of the sciolist or the charlatan.
1991  I. Sinclair Downriver(1995) iv. 93 A sciolist, call him Sonny Jaques, with a gold stud earring, and a doctorate in Romance Languages.
 scioˈlistic adj. that is a sciolist; characteristic of a sciolist.

1830  S. Wells Hist. Drainage Great Level of Fens I. viii. 147 Those navigation laws, which more degenerate legislators and sciolistic quacks have in modern times dared to abrogate.
1870  J. R. Lowell Among my Bks. 2nd Ser. 298 Sciolistic theorizing and dogmatism.
2004  W. F. Buckley Miles Gone By ii. 107 Another reason for giving up Firing Line is the progressive exasperation one feels over sciolistic preparation and exegesis.

Poem of the Week

Tell all the truth but tell it slant

by Emily Dickinson

Tell all the truth but tell it slant —
Success in Circuit lies
Too bright for our infirm Delight
The Truth’s superb surprise
As Lightning to the Children eased
With explanation kind
The Truth must dazzle gradually
Or every man be blind —

Travel Theme: Fruit





2015 115

If you’re feeling peachy and would like to cherry-pick some photos to create your own interpretation of this week’s theme (everyone’s welcome!) here’s what to do:

  • Create your own post and title it Travel theme: Fruit
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Word of the Week

discept, v.
[‘ intr. To dispute, debate; (also) to express disagreement; to differ from (an opinion, etc.).’]
Pronunciation: Brit. /dᵻˈsɛpt/, U.S. /dᵻˈsɛpt/
Etymology: < classical Latin disceptāre to dispute, debate, argue, to arbitrate, to judge, decide < dis- dis- prefix + captāre captate v.
Compare earlier disceptation n., disception n.
Now rare. intr. To dispute, debate; (also) to express disagreement; to differ from (an opinion, etc.).1639 W. Lacey Iudgm. conc. W. Chillingworth x. 47 The differences of Sectaries among themselues in most substantiall points of faith; and those of Catholiques discepting and discussing difficulties occurring, as yet vndecreed and vndetermined by authority.
1652 J. Gaule Πυς-μαντια 27 It is God that thus discepts with you.
1818 T. L. Peacock Nightmare Abbey xi. 150 Permit me to discept.
1869 R. Browning Ring & Bk. IV. x. 59, I try it with my reason, nor discept From any point I probe and pronounce sound.
1925 Times Lit. Suppl. 12 Mar. 169/1 He discepts and distinguishes, classifies his kinds of tragedy, his orders of comedy, his new shoots of opera, burlesque and pantomime.


I’m counting down till Saturday when I’ll get a chance to pitch a story idea to a producer. It’s not something I do every day and I can’t share too many details, but I hope it’s a sign that my writing is better than average.

Prayers welcome as I prepare for this short presentation.

Word of the Week

pluranimity, n.
[‘ Diversity of opinions; (also) an instance of this.’]
Pronunciation: Brit. /ˌplʊərəˈnɪmᵻti/, /ˌplɔːrəˈnɪmᵻti/,  U.S. /ˌplʊrəˈnɪmᵻdi/
Etymology: <  classical Latin plūr-, plūs more (see plus prep., n., adv., and adj.) + -animity (in unanimity n.). Compare pluranimous adj.
  Diversity of opinions; (also) an instance of this.

1647  N. Ward Serm. before House of Commons 13 The Lord mingles a perverse spirit amongst them, there is nothing but contradiction and prevarication, objections interjections, puzlings and counterpuzlings, pluranimities and pluranimosities amongst them.
1907  W. De Morgan Alice-for-Short ix. 95 Whatever innate ideas on the subject of oil-painting he possessed, had been disorganised and carefully thrown out of gear by the want of unanimity, or presence of pluranimity, in his instructors.

Weekly Photo Challenge: Grid

2015, fall 1773

1. Each week, we’ll provide a theme for creative inspiration. You take photographs based on your interpretation of the theme, and post them on your blog (a new post!) anytime before the following Friday when the next photo theme will be announced.

2. To make it easy for others to check out your photos, title your blog post “Weekly Photo Challenge: (theme of the week)” and be sure to use the “postaday″ tag.

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Other great photos:

Silent Sunday

2015, fall 1753

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