So there's an angel with a burning sword standing before my door into Althouse's comments section. She wants to out-source to our own little bloglet comments sections, and since I have let my blogspot account fall into decrepitude, I thought "why not?"
Last night, she asked the difference between a traveller and a tourist - and my first thought was that "traveller" is a synonym for "gypsy", and no-one wants a caravan full of those parked on their street. But I suppose in the context asked, "traveller" is for that arrogant sort that hates to think of himself as an ugly American, a fat tourist wandering around landmarks in oversize sunglasses and baggy shorts. (Some rogue spell-checker objects to the extra ell in "traveller", but nuts to that, two ells has more of a song to it.)
The other quote is from one of my favorite books, "Walden," by Henry David Thoreau: "I have travelled a good deal in Concord..." Concord! Not even Massachusetts. Concord. Of course, he didn't have a car.
Walden again... damn, I'm a lot like Thoreau, at least in
temperament, habits and prejudices, but every time I slam up against his
Walden rubbish, I find myself hating those parts of me that I see in
him. Insular, pompous, incurious, misanthropic, narrow, indolent... I
can't help but think that he might have been worth a pinch of owlshit if
he had been kidnapped by gypsies as a child and had his outlook
forcibly expanded by encounters outside of his own small sphere.
ADDED: A reader quotes my "Those who get paid for a particular type of
work may find it hard to explain the value of the activity to someone
who isn't getting paid but must in fact pay"
One quote deserves another, from Bujold's A Civil Campaign, which I once had taped up in my cubicle back when I was the company bookkeeper:
Never... ever suggest they don't have to pay you. What they pay for,
they'll value. What they get for free, they'll take for granted, and
then demand as a right. Hold them up for all the market will bear.