Open main menu

Page:Hine (1912) Letters from an old railway official.djvu/210

This page has been validated.

Letters From A Railway Official.

fault of the system but of the poverty of the English language which lacks varying terminations of root words to express different shades of meaning. If necessary to meet this view helps can be sought from such highly inflected languages as Greek and Esperanto, and new words coined. Thus the same word with a slightly different ending would mean, “assistant superintendent in charge of maintenance of way and structures as classified by the Interstate Commerce Commission,” or, “assistant superintendent in charge of maintenance of equipment, including an allowance for depreciation at the legal and constitutional ratio of sixteen to one, expiating the crime of 1873 and glorifying the Hepburn Act of 1906.”

Many practical things in this world escape attention because they are so close as to be inside the focal distance. The persons most concerned are often too close to a proposition to observe what should be distinctly obvious. I uncover my headlight to the fellow down East who recently showed us all that green flags can be replaced by the night markers. For the over-specialization of perishable day indicators he substituted the all-round day and night marker. The supply people should not