Tim and Beverly's comments were really directed at something else. If a
joke doesn't work, you don't say anything, or you write to me privately. You
don't "boo" me in public. They've never "cheered" me in public (and I've
posted heaps), so where's the balance?
Both Tim and Beverly have written or at least strongly hinted in the past
that anyone (me) who posts etymologies is "unprofessional" and shouldn't be on
I then suggested a new web format ("Doppkit" would be in NOTES & QUERIES;
the Washington Post "Sexgate" article would be reprinted in NEWS) and I even
offered to donate money to the American Dialect Society, but nobody was
This is all old news, but until there are fundamental changes in the
American Dialect Society (i.e., we have publications that cover all parts of
the language and we aggressively seek new members who reflect these broadened
interests), I'll always be "unprofessional" and unwelcome--no matter how the
material is presented.