6,814 reputation
324
bio website none
location Pittsburgh, PA
age 64
visits member for 1 year, 10 months
seen 16 hours ago

For the last 57 years, I have been a practicing Christian (liberally conservative and evangelical). Should any posting I make to any Stack Exchange website pique your curiosity as to the what and why of my beliefs, feel free to communicate with me at drlarter@yahoo.com. I do not claim to have all the answers--let alone all the questions(!), but I would consider it a privilege to discuss Christianity with you in a rational and civilized fashion.

My wife (a native Egyptian and Christian) and I have been married over 41 years. We have two grown children who have flown the coop, making us empty nesters.

I have a Master's degree in Speech Communications and three years of doctoral studies in Rhetorical Theory at the University of Pittsburgh. After a brief stint as a teacher of public speaking, I embarked on a couple of different and totally divergent pursuits by owning and operating two small businesses.

Tired of being in business for myself, I went back to school at Duquesne University's Paralegal Institute in Pittsburgh, where I received a General Practice Certificate last December (2013). I am currently looking for employment in that field, and would like to round out the last stage of my work life in some area of jurisprudence.

A rhetorical perspective is almost as natural to me as breathing. Overt and covert attempts at persuasion, whether written or spoken, are my legitimate targets for analysis, evaluation, and criticism. Of particular interest to the EL&U web site contributors would be, with some adaptations and modifications, the traditional canons of speech: style (elocutio), invention (inventio), organization (dispositio), memorability (memoria), and delivery (pronuntiatio or actio) .


16h
comment writing paragraphs
A simple guide for writing a short paper (or even giving a speech) is the following: "Tell them what you are going to tell them. Tell them. Tell them what you told them." In other words, have an introduction, a body, and a conclusion. The introduction and conclusion are the shortest parts; the body is the longest. For example, [Introduction:] "Today, the cost of electricity to power the average home is much too high. I'll give you three reasons why." [Body:] "First . . .. Second . . .. Third . . .." [Conclusion:] "I hope you now see why electricity is priced too high, given that . . .." Don
16h
comment writing paragraphs
I suggest you outline each paragraph BEFORE writing it. Generally speaking, a paragraph contains a main idea in its first or second sentence. The following sentences expand upon or develop the main idea. Your last sentence (or two) either introduces the next main idea or leads into the development of the first paragraph's main idea in paragraph number two. For example: "The cost of electricity to power the average 5000-square-foot home has risen dramatically in the last 50 years. In 1960, for example . . .. This was particularly true in states with the coldest winters. Furthermore . . .."
16h
comment Lowercase w/ and w/o or W/ and W/O - which is better?
@Mari-LouA: I may be an old'un, too, but I do know that W/O is an abbreviation for the word "without." The W/O prevents your cuneiform tablet from getting too crowded too soon, Mari-Lou, as it saves you from writing four letters. The same goes for that costly papyrus. Why, just yesterday I priced a one-cubit-by-one-cubit piece at 45 shekels! Outrageous! Sincerely: Don, the scribe, owner and proprietor of Scribes Unlimited, your one-stop shop for tablets (clay and wax), fine papyrus, and parchment (made only from free-range sheep and goats).
16h
comment “Preliminary Considerations”
@matheburg: You're welcome, and yeah, sometimes ya never know what non sequiter is going to spring forth from my fingertips. Nevertheless, making your review of the literature a "part" unto itself seemed like a good idea to me. With even more suggestions from other EL&U members, you should be in good stead for wrapping up your thesis. "Where no counsel is, the people fall: but in the multitude of counsellors there is safety" (Proverbs 11:14; cf. 15:22). You see, you just never know what's going to spring forth . . .. Don
18h
answered “Preliminary Considerations”
19h
comment What am I giving, if I am giving: Clothing items, technology items, beauty items, recipes, knowledge and whatever else…a variety?
A potpourri of gifts? A mélange of gifts? A variety of gifts? An embarrassment of gifts? A multiplicity of gifts?
2d
comment Is this metonym or synecdoche?
You've given me something to think about. The differences and similarities between synecdoche and metonymy have caused no little consternation among some folks, to the point where they use the terms interchangeably. That's OK, I guess. When I think about it, the word "dish" as you've used it could very well be an example of synecdoche, since a literal dish is a part of the whole, which contains both dish and victuals! "Gimme that dish" could mean "Give me that plate/saucer, cup" or "Give me the dish and the food on it." How would you 'splain "I'll have the blue-plate special, please"? Don
Oct
19
comment Is this metonym or synecdoche?
I call "cabinet" simply an uncountable noun, much as the word "committee" is an uncountable noun which takes a singular verb, at least in AE. Metonymic comparisons involve taking a word which is beyond (i.e., meta/meto) the name (i.e., nym) and using it to substitute for the name. Example: The crown issued a decree. Or, The badge caught me doing 65 in a 35 zone. Or, My blood, sweat, and tears went into that project. Or, His blood be upon us and our children. In the examples, the implied referent is, respectively, the king, the cop, hard work or labor, and the murder of an innocent man. Don
Oct
13
awarded  Nice Answer
Oct
13
comment When and where did “spanking” begin to be used as an adjective?
@JoelAnair: Thanks for the confirmation. I can now rest assured that my instinct was good. Don
Oct
13
comment Formal English - Phrase request
To assure you of prompt delivery, we recommend you follow up on your purchase orders.
Oct
13
answered “How was [the] camping?” — is “the” appropriate?
Oct
13
answered When and where did “spanking” begin to be used as an adjective?
Oct
13
answered Other ways to say “I'm rooting for you?”
Oct
13
revised Other ways to say “I'm rooting for you?”
filled in a missing word
Oct
13
answered Alternative to “old-fashioned”, with a distinct and positive meaning?
Oct
13
comment Before I go to sleep vs before I'm going to sleep
Yes, I think so. Another way of stating it: "I'm going to sleep, but first I'm going to finish my report." Here there is a firm intention to do both (i.e., go to sleep AND finish the report). Also, in Jane Doe's sentence, there is a hint of a process: a process of going to sleep. Perhaps she is in the habit of brushing her teeth, putting on her jammies, and so on. Language is funny that way. It's hard to tell what she means without there being further information. Context is crucial, of course. Don
Oct
12
answered Before I go to sleep vs before I'm going to sleep
Oct
7
answered I hope I will have you enjoying this lecture
Oct
7
comment Does “to be on the surface” mean to make something known to the public?
Well, there's "to be on the down low," so why can't there be "to be on the up high"? Sounds logical to me . . . sort of.