Right on! for the genericized noun

wordbrandsThis newspaper writer I’ve met notes: “MS Word kept capitalizing ‘laundromat.’ I checked, and Webster’s agrees. Westinghouse copyrighted it back in 1947. But. . . . really?” This led to this interesting discussion about all the words that, once upon a time, were capitalized because they were brand names but are not now:

App Store, Aspirin, Catseye, Cellophane, Dopp kit [I had to look this up, even though I’ve had one!], Dry ice, Escalator, Heroin, Kerosene, Lanolin, Linoleum, Mimeograph, Primal Therapy, Thermos, Touch-tone, Videotape, Yo-Yo, and Zipper.

And Dumpster Continue reading

Christmas debacle

donlevy-doorDon’t you hate it when you go away for the holidays, and you come back to a disaster? That’s what happened to Don Levy of Albany. I don’t know Don personally, though I did see him once in a Rite Aid downtown, but we are friends on Facebook.

Returning on the Greyhound from his mom’s house the Tuesday after Christmas, he found a note from his landlord, NGB Management, that they had changed the lock to his apartment. He had to wait well over an hour to receive new keys. He realized SOMETHING was when he saw a board nailed on to the wall, as shown in this photo he took.

Don was told there had been a fire in the apartment next door on Christmas morning, and the fire department had to shut off the electricity to both apartments. He was informed that the fire department deemed his place uninhabitable, though the had no smoke damage.

The place was admittedly messy; Don had suffered a cold the week before, but it was subsequently cleaned up by him and his friends.
The problem now is that the landlord claims that the fire department has to inspect the apartment before they can turn on the power. The landlord seems to have made it make it Don’s responsibility to locate an electrician to inspect the place. As a tenant for much longer than I’ve been a homeowner, that doesn’t make ANY sense to me.

Conversely, the fire department tell him, logically, that it’s the landlord’ s responsibility to get the power turned on. National Grid says the same way thing. He waits, increasingly impatiently, for the landlord to do his side.

The result is than Don was living in a hotel room, at his own expense, for several days, before finfding friends to crash with. He is currently weighing his legal options as well as looking for another apartment.

Don is appreciative for folks such as Sean McLaughlin and Richard LaJoy, who have helped him out. But he is anxious to be in his own place again.