Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Punctuation matters

As some of you (okay, just one) will recall, I decided to name this blog Sort Quench & Dump after all my other ideas were rejected by the August Panel of Experts called in to judge all things titular. I had seen a sign on the factory floor of a textile waste processing plant that said just that: SORT QUENCH & DUMP. I immediately copied down the sign and uttered those three words to myself, mantra-wise, all day long. What an appealing trio. How much better that it was the three of them, better than merely Sort Quench, or Quench Dump. (I needn’t mention that old Trinitarian saw about things coming in threes.) Without knowing exactly what it meant I assumed it was a three word phrase composed of three verbs in the imperative form, in sequence, instructing the reader how to treat of a certain type of textile waste.
Well I was wrong.

Dad may have forgotten much of the last 50 years (What are we doing in Iraq? Do we want them as a colony?), but he still knows more or less everything there is to know about the business of textile waste, buying it, processing it and selling it.
So he informed me last night that the title of the blog was mis-punctuated. It should be Sort quench, and dump. As in: First you Sort the quench, and then you Dump it.
Quench (And you will not find this definition in a dictionary) is fused bits of synthetic waste. Occasionally when the machinery overheats some of the synthetic waste (quench is normally about .01%) will melt and thus fuse together to form hard bits that have to be removed because they cannot be torn apart in the shredding machines. Hence: Sort quench, and dump.
Correction duly noted and applied.

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