The Weight of Talent

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Among all my friends’ discussions on stumbling through the overcrowded job market these days, one of the constant complaints is the inability to apply natural talents in the workplace, or at least demonstrate the availability of talents to potential employers.

The word talent comes from the Latin talentum, from the Greek τάλαντον “scale, balance”. It was used in the ancient world as a large denomination of money based on its unit of measure. It first began to adopt new meaning after the dissemination of the Parable of the Talents in the New Testament book of Matthew: More

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Soft We Mosey in the Night

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Today is, besides from Thursday, a prime number, and purple, my father’s birthday. I can’t help but combine this happy occurrence with a revelation to you of one of my most treasured adventures with him.

It started out as a cool evening walk in the summer (or one of the seasons that wasn’t winter; though of course, now that I think of it, it could have been winter, but that’s not important). It ended into a bubbling foray into comparative linguistics.

Of course, comparative linguistics may not be the correct term, but it remains a fact that we were closely examining English, which is a language — allegedly — and so falls into “linguistics”, and we were comparing words within the language, so hence, comparative linguistics.

The conversation probably began with a comment about how nice it was to be out for a walk. Then, as those brains born into Scrabble-playing, dictionary-using families are apt to do, a brief list of synonyms was put forth.

Perhaps we were not out for a walk. Would it be more correct to say we were out for a stroll? Or indeed, a ramble? A deep and thorough look into each synonym followed, complete with well-argued stances over the exact implication of each term.

The rest of the walk turned into a great fishing expedition, wherein we netted over 100 Terms Used for Various Methods of Self-Powered Bi-Pedal Locomotion (as my father put it), or 100 Ways to Cross a Room (as I did). Our late-night venture proved profitable for the entire family, who joined in to help fill out the ever-growing list once we returned home.

Here follows this annotated, still-incomplete list with an open invitation to help expand it. I end this post with an ebullient outpouring of effervescence in wishing my father many happy returns of the day. More