India’s national census results were out back in February. And while it shows a much expected rise in population making us well nigh the world’s most populous nation, contributing nearly 17.5% and with a mere one million short of the Chinese, we have something else to think about: female feticide.
Over the past years, our male child to female child ratio–given as girls per 1,000 boys–has been well below the average of 952. In the 1992 census we were at 945 and in 2001 we fell to 927. Ten years later, we are at a mere 914 girls per 1,000 boys. Continue reading
Previous entries: P, M, K, C, J. Notice I have listed double the number of extracts under this letter. This is simply because these are some of the finest in the whole book by Bierce. A little bonus for you to chew and occasionally swallow and digest. Read on:
Recruit – noun A person distinguishable from a civilian by his uniform and a soldier from his gait.
Reform – noun A campaign transparency, which is laid aside as soon as it has served its purpose; a thing that mostly satisfies reformers as opposed to reformation.
Relations – noun, plural People that you call on, or that call on you, according to whether they are rich or poor.
You have been with me through entries under the letters P,M,K, andC. Today, we shall read through J.
J – is a consonant in English, but some nations use it as a vowel–than which nothing could be more absurd. Its original form, which has been but slightly modified, was that of the tail of a subdued dog, and it was not a letter but a character, standing for a latin verb, jacere, ‘to throw,’ because when a stone is thrown at a dog the dog’s tail assumes that shape. This is the origin of the letter, as expounded by the renowned Dr Jocolpus Bumer, of the University of Belgrade, who established his conclusions on the subject in a work of three quarto volumes and committed suicide on being reminded that the j in the Roman alphabet had originally no curl.
Today is the day of the letter C. ’nuff said. Or maybe, ’nuff seen. Whatever that means. We’ve read through P, M and K. Read on.
Cabbage – noun A familiar kitchen-garden vegetable about as large and wise as a man’s head.
Calamity – noun A more than commonly plain and unmistakable reminder that the affairs of this life are not of our own ordering. Calamities are of two types: misfortune to ourselves and good fortune to others.
Capital – noun The seat of misgovernment. That which provides the fire, the pot, the dinner, the table and the knife and fork for the anarchist.