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in a web of glass, pinned to the edges of vision

And Jingo was his name-o.

I'd forgotten how often we saw Magritte

mucha mosaic

And Jingo was his name-o.

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Jingoistic language in news coverage is becoming a horrifyingly apparent trend. Today's example comes from this newstory on CNN.com:
NASA chief rallies his troops in field

What the HELL? I was unaware that NASA's troops were in the field. Oh, do you mean NASA's employees out in the field looking for bits of shuttle? Yes, you do.
Why does 'rallies his troops in field' make sense here, in reference to a specifically peaceful-purpose government agency? Look out, Saddam, you're in the targets so hard people don't even stop to think about why they're using military vocabulary in utterly inappropriate venues.
Then again, this is CNN. They don't do a particuarly good job of using the language they're born to anyways. Though I seem to recall hearing other similar slip-slide of meaning in other news stories, over the last couple of weeks.

In vaguely related news yesterday, I finally actually shed a tear or two for the Columbia astronauts. I was listening to Kate Bush's 'Hounds of Love' in the car, and the lyrics to 'Hello, Earth' struck me like a hammer. We start off with what sounds suspiciously like mission-control patter:

"Columbia now nine times the speed of sound."

After about a verse, we come to the bridge:

I get out of my car, Step into the night
And look up at the sky.
And there's something bright, Travelling fast.
Just look at it go! Just look at it go!

And I thought to myself about how horrible it must have been. To know that the shuttle was flying to pieces around you. To know that there was no rescue. That's what saddens me about the Columbia tragedy. The personal.
A government agency? What, the one that got 30 billion more into the budget? No.
A dream deferred? This dream's been being deferred since before I was born, kids. This shouldn't feel unusual to us- this should feel de rigeur.
No, I was (and am) sad that seven people died so horribly-- and so alone.
  • Regarding jingoism, I don't know. The CEO where I work always uses military terminology when discussing the year's plan at the annual pep rallie, using diagrams with tanks, bombers, the whole bit, all pre-2001. This is the sort of question that can be settled by going through a few newspaper archives, though.

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