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Friday, May 7, 2004

I have some ideas about the current tome I'm transcribing, but I'm keeping them to myself. Someone has taken the trouble to cut and paste wording out of several law books and other sources to make an operating agreement for the Kennel. That someone has so much time and energy invested in this document that I wouldn't feel right questioning anything. I was given 32 pages to type, and type them I shall.

If it had been the Boss who threw this thing together (instead of one of his other lackeys), I'd be burning up the phone and fax lines letting him know what I think. I'd probably be making a passel of corrections to wording and style without even consulting him. We've been together so long that I'm comfortable doing that.

Inconsistencies in formatting bother me. A lot. And I've tweaked some of the paragraphs to make the document look more professionally done, but the tweaking has been minor. That's why they call it tweaking, I guess, instead of massive overhauling. A lot of this material is in outline form, with subheadings and subdivisions and subcategories. I do the best I can to keep that kind of formatting uniform all the way through.

I have a lot of ideas about how the layout of what I'm typing could be improved. I also have a few notions about vocabulary and syntax. I'm not a stickler for unswervingly following the rules of grammar in most of what I write, as long as I'm secure that there's a reason behind every deviation. I won't type a run-on sentence or comma splice, though. Not even here.

A document that will be signed, sealed, and filed with the state should be Strunk-perfect. It bothers me when this one seems to ramble. The technical precision of the legal boilerplate is undermined by the conversational tone of some of the added elements. The person doing the hardest part of the job is untrained and trying to make the best of a difficult assignment.

Of course, it doesn't help that she's also the Boss's girlfriend, and that she's being forced to incorporate some of his unconventional ideas into the agreement. She has to reconcile his paranoia with the government's legal requirements. All I have to do is type, so complaining about wording and style is a luxury I have and she doesn't. That's why I do the smart thing and keep my mouth shut until I'm asked. Maybe even after.

7 May 2004

Cloudy day.

I'm learning more legal language all the time these days. Apparently "conveyances" aren't stage coaches and donkey carts, and "instruments" aren't bassoons and flugelhorns. And I believe I still have obligations to the company even if I fall into a vat of chocolate, because Article 29 says I'm not excused because of "death, disability, dissolution, or any other reason." (And by the way, there ain't no sanity clause.)

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The Reds had been getting Barry Bonds out all day, but when the seventh inning came along they chickened out and walked him intentionally with the bases empty and two out. Pedro Feliz came up next and did what he's supposed to do, what Giants fans have been hoping for all season. He unloaded a two-run homer to give the Giants a 2-0 lead. They then took a 6-0 lead into the bottom of the ninth but survived a bases-loaded, no-out situation to hold on for a 6-1 win. So far Cincinnati has been much friendlier than New York.

Recent recommendations can always be found on the links page.

One year ago: Unruly
"I listened, and when he asked if I was listening and not just patronizing him, I said, quite patronizingly, that I was."

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