What does shrift mean? I know what the phrase 'short shrift' means. But the word shrift, itself, I'm not so sure. I've used it (even had someone say to me, you mean 'shift' right? like I was an idiot. These are the same folks who talk about a mute point. No, I wasn't talking about some kind of mini-dress or perhaps a gear engagement device in a poorly designed car, one that sits too low to the floor? No, I *meant* SHRIFT. sigh)
I think I knew this once...
::looking it up::
Word History: To be given short shrift is not the blessing it once was. The source of our verb shrive (shrove, shriven) and noun shrift, which have technical meanings from ecclesiastical Latin, is Classical Latin scrībere, “to write.” Shrive comes from the Old English verb scrīfan, “to decree, decree after judgment, impose a penance upon (a penitent), hear the confession of.” The past participle of scrīfan is scrifen, our shriven. The noun shrift, “penance; absolution,” comes from Old English scrift with the same meaning, which comes from scrīptus, the perfect passive participle of scrībere, and means “what is written,” or, to use the Latin word, “what is prescribed.” Theologians and confessors viewed the sacrament of penance as a prescription that cured a moral illness. In early medieval times penances were long and arduous—lengthy pilgrimages and even lifelong exile were not uncommon—and had to be performed before absolution, not after as today. However, less demanding penances could be given in extreme situations; short shrift was a brief penance given to a person condemned to death so that absolution could be granted before execution.
- Summary, careless treatment; scant attention: These annoying memos will get short shrift from the boss.
- Quick work.
- A short respite, as from death.
- The brief time before execution granted a condemned prisoner for confession and absolution.
I love words. It saddens me that there's an attitude out there that using certain words (long ones, mostly) means you're elitist or being condescending.
How about using them because you just love the sound of the word, the way it rolls off the tongue? Or for the specificity of meaning - the exactitude. Why say "sorta blue" when you mean perriwinkle?
You'd think more programmers and other techie folk, whose lives revolve around their codes and applications doing and meaning exactly the things they are meant to do or mean, would have sympathy for a large and exact vocabulary - outside of technospeak, that is. I don't necessarily find that to be true. And I know LOTS of these people where I work and live. I've probably lost more words that I knew once (as a result of raging CRS* syndrome) than most of them will ever know. I find that sad.
Today I'm washing clothes and packing my bags for a week long business trip - my flight leaves tomorrow morning. I'm going to try and pack light. I've never accomplished that but I'll try.
Now that you can't take any liquid items onboard in your carry-on luggage, my old way of packing one bag with all the toiletries I need, doesn't fly anymore. (Yeah, dreadful pun) So I put things in plastic containers with lids, like Tupperware but the disposables, (Ziploc makes an assortment of these) and stack them in my larger suitcase. I also discovered if you use the large freezer storage zipper bags (and I mean the ones with the plastic zipper slide) for small stuff like undies, you can squeeze all the air out of the bag when you close it and the stuff takes up less room. The only loose stuff in my suitcase anymore are power cords and a book or two.
My suitcase, since I started doing this, has been searched in 3 out of 4 recent trips by TSA. I know because they leave a note - most of the time. Once they didn't but it was obvious they'd rummaged. Everything was in a different place than I'd originally packed it. So far nobody at TSA has sticky fingers.
I put my outfits in a garment bag (a luggage one, not the light plastic things) and check them through with the suitcase. All I carry on the plane any more is my tote with my computer, purse, reading materials, iPod and dry snacks. I'm always concerned that they'll lose my luggage some day and I'll have to wear the same clothes for a week. I dress nicely when I fly, just in case.
My son and DIL will be flying out tomorrow as well. Off to the adventure that is military life. We don't know yet how long he'll be Stateside before they ship him off. I suppose we'll find out pretty soon.
My daughter's SailorBoy deploys with his squadron (he's in Naval aviation) this month as well. Keep praying (if you do that) for peace and for our boys in harm's way.
Ooh - I've just discovered a blog by a sailor deployed to Kuwait - "Sand Sailor" as I was checking for Technorati Tags and I'm going to add it to my blogroll. I hope you'll take a look and give him encouragement.
*Can't Remember Sh**