Word Order

What we call things matters.

I think I was first struck by this years ago, when I was sitting in a pew at synagogue and my clergy-person at the time was talking about the distinction between being “a Jewish-American” and “an American Jew”.  It’s a question of what word modifies which, and which one gets the emphasis, and the distinction that word-order makes has stuck with me through years. Continue reading


I don’t take for granted what it is that the Monster notices or retains.  There are good days and bad days, and subjects where I know he’s well-versed.

Descriptive, literal language, he’s fairly good at.  For example, on Friday when he and I went down to the curling center, we spent most of the ride there and back talking about what we saw while we were driving.  He’s very good at distinguishing between things we see while we drive, though not always with precision, and with a little bit of prompting, he can work around his own scripts to describe things. Narrative language, on the other hand, is a deficiency that I don’t know how to work on without significant prompting.

But even I underestimate sometimes his descriptive retention.

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