Wednesday, November 18, 2020

Use it the way it was intended!

The other day, yesterday in fact, I was standing on my driveway looking out and about and up walked a teenager.  What caught my eye was that he was holding a skateboard in one hand and a helmet in the other.

I thought, to myself, that's odd.  Shouldn't he be riding that skateboard and wearing the helmet?  I suspect he could have been going to a party and was going to give the skateboard/helmet to someone - but then wouldn't the skateboard/helmet be wrapped?  Heck but even I know presents are the best thing about birthdays.  I mean, cake and ice cream rank right up there but presents?!  Yeah, love opening presents, I do.

But I digress.  Teenager was not using the skateboard/helmet the way a person (in this case me) might ordinarily use (or think to use) a skateboard/helmet.

This, of course, reminds me of a situation I recently saw.  I was walking around a public library when I came across a study room.  While a study room in a library isn't all that odd, what was odd was that the door was being propped open by a law dictionary.  A Black's Law Dictionary, to be specific.

You know, before I became a omnipotent law librarian, I never much cared how books were treated.  Rip a page here, fold over a corner there, splash a drink on the pages - all's fair in love and war.  When I became an omnipotent law librarian, things changed.  I suddenly became aware of ripped pages in books; found myself telling people not to fold corners on pages; and DON'T be drinking or eating when reading a book else you might spill on that precious book!!!!

I became the a-typical librarian with a bun in her hair shushing everyone (except I don't have enough hair for a bun - but you get the idea).

Anyway, no one was around to shush or say not to use the dictionary as a doorstop.  Thankfully, it wasn't a library book (probably owned by the person who was using it as a doorstop).  Yes, I would have looked darned silly shushing someone in a library where I don't work - but it was the omnipotent librarian rising up in me.  Sometimes, I can't help it.

Had there been a person around, I would have, probably - most likely, have admonished them to use the Dictionary for its intended purpose - you know, like looking up definitions of legal words?  

I mean, have you ever HAD to have a definition of a legal word but couldn't find it because all the Black's Law Dictionaries were being used as doorstops?!  It would drive a person insane.  

Clearly, this person didn't know the power contained in a Black's Law Dictionary.  Clearly, this person was not aware that using this Black's Law Dictionary was damaging it.  Clearly, this person was missing out on critical definitions that could - quite possibly - change their life!

Definitions like:

Incidental Damages: 1. Losses reasonably associated with or related to actual damages (also refer to 1 James J. White & Robert S. Summers, Uniform Commercial Code § 10-3, at 561-62 (4th ed. 1995); C.J.S. Sales §§ 396, 400-401, 404-405).

Interdict (in-tǝr-dikt), n. Roman & civil law. 1. An injunction or other prohibitory, exhibitory, or restitutory decree (refer to C.J.S. Injunctions §§ 2-4, 12, 14, 22, 24, 166).

Neutral, n. 1. A person or country taking no side in a dispute; esp., a country that is at peace and is committed to aid neither of two or more belligerents.  Cf. Belligerent (see also Theodore D. Woolsey, Introduction to the Study of International Law § 163, at 276 (5th ed. 1878)).

Pro hac vice (proh hahk vee-chay or hak vi-see also hahk vees).  [Latin] For this occasion or particular purpose.  The phrase usu. refers to a lawyer who has not been admitted to practice in a particular jurisdiction but who is admitted there temporarily for the purpose of conducting a particular case (see also C.J.S. Attorney and Client §§ 26-28).

Rout (rowt), n. The offense that occurs when an unlawful assembly makes some move toward the accomplishment of its participants' common purpose.  Cf. Riot.  (see also C.J.S. Riot; Insurrection §§ 2-10).

Steganography (steg-ǝ-nog-rǝ-fee), n. A cryptographic method that digitally embeds or encodes one item of information within another.  Because a digitized audio or visual file usu. has unused data areas, indelible (and nearly undetectable) information can be added without altering the file's quality. Copyright or trademark tags can be hidden in every fragment of a digital work, making disassociation almost impossible (also termed digital fingerprinting; digital watermarking).

Viator (vi-ay-tǝr).  A terminally or chronically ill life-insurance policyholder who sells the policy to a third party in return for a lump-sum payment equal to a percentage of the policy's face value.

Zygocephalum (zi-gǝ-sef-ǝ-lǝm), n. [Greek fr. zygo- "yoke, pair" + kephalos "head"] Hist. A measure of land, esp. the amount that can be plowed in one day.

I mean, this is powerful stuff!  Did you know these words?  Heck, did you know the definitions of these words?!?  Probably not - because you (or someone) was using the dictionary as a doorstop.  

Oh, the humanity!

So next time, when you need to prop open a door or something, take a moment and think of what you're doing.  Next time, think about the power you hold in your hands before you go and use that book (or dictionary) as a doorstop.

Just, use whatever you're holding the way it was supposed to be used.  

That's all I'm asking.

1 comment:

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