tlhIngan-Hol Archive: Thu Jan 07 12:21:06 1999

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Re: Noun suffixes, type 5

On Thu, 7 Jan 1999 10:48:23 -0800 (PST) Steven Boozer 
<> wrote:

> charghwI':
> : >there is a slippery slope one would encounter while trying to 
> : >assign the threshold of functionality for {lel}...

> ter'eS:
> : Again we are faced with the vagueness of some of the dictionary
> : definitions.  In the definition of /lel/ as 'remove, take out',
> : are these two separate operations (in which case I would concede
> : your point), or does 'take out' restrict the meaning of 'remove'?
> : No way of knowing without canon (and probably not even then!).
> I guess that's my cue...  {lel} "get out, take out" has never been used in
> canon.  

That is the bitter pill following Okrand's advice that the best 
way to understand a word is to observe its useage.

> But an observation:  Is wood really extracted {lel} from a tree, or are the
> bark and branches removed {teq}  ("take off") - also never used in canon - 
> from the wood?  

If you work with whole logs, you are right. Otherwise, if you've 
ever seen real lumberyard operations, you'd know that the logs 
are more typically cut before the bark is removed. In fact, bark 
removal only happens as a consequence of recutting dimensional 
lumber to standard sizes. The bark and the wood next to it are 
thrown away or chipped up to make partical board or inner 
sections of low-grade plywood. Pieces of wood are extracted from 
what had been a tree.

> Can one say that the wood {Sor Hap} is processed from the
> trees
> {Sor}, much like metals {baS} are refined *{watlhmoH} ("purified"?) 

Only for extremely processed wood products, like partical board 
or paper or cardboard. Wood is a material removed from trees and 
mostly handled raw. Some are chemically treated to reduce rot, 
but for the most part, wood is extracted and shaped, not 

> - or
> should I say extracted {lel}! - from ore {nagh}/{tlhIl} and other natural
> resources *{jo tlhol}?  How do speakers of other Terran languages view this?
Ore is a very different stuff. The metal is not pure, surrounded 
by ore which must be removed. Ore is usually a mixture of stuff 
which must be melted and separated. It is indeed purified to get 
the metal.

My whole point is that wood is extremely different from metal or 
plastic. Its fibers are like hair, held together with resin. The 
grain affects how you carve or cut the wood. Wood is very strong 
along one line and very weak along another. Make a diving board 
out of slab cut wood and it will break instead of spring. Make a 
guitar out of slab cut wood and it will warp and split.

Meanwhile, floor joists are strongest if they ARE slab cut. 
Quartersawn wood, needed for diving boards and musical 
instruments is weaker for a rafter or floor joist than slab cut 

Wood swells and shrinks across the grain with changes in 
humidity. It does not swell or shrink along the grain. The 
fibers get thicker or thinner. They don't get longer or shorter. 
Like hair, the grain can be curly, producing a beautiful figure 
in the wood, though curly grained wood is weaker and more prone 
to warp or split.

A bowl is a stupid shape for wood. Wooden bowls are very fragile 
and can explode from internal stress because the shape ignores 
the grain of the wood. Boxes, however, can be incredibly strong 
because the grain of the wood is very much in the mind of the 

Glue joints are incredibly strong when side-grain is glued to 
side-grain. Glue anything to end-grain and it eventually falls 
apart. End-grain does not hold glue.

"Going against the grain" has meaning with wood. Just try 
pushing a hand plane the wrong way across a piece of wood.

Any comparison of wood to metal or plastic is ignorant.
> -- 
> Voragh                       
> Ca'Non Master of the Klingons


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