File under 'words are curious things'
Sat 21 Jan 2006 11:04 AM
I am aware that the words 'philosophy' and 'philosophical' are commonly employed in ways that have nothing to do with academic philosophy, but a story in today's the NY Times seemed obviously wrong to me. The story by Denise Grady is about a GI who suffered crippling injuries in Iraq. She writes:
Corporal Poole is philosophical. "Even when I do get low it's just for 5 or 10 minutes," he said. "I'm just a happy guy. I mean, like, it sucks, basically, but it happened to me and I'm still alive."It turns out that this usage is perfectly kosher. One on-line dictionary offers 'meeting trouble with level-headed detachment' as a second definition for 'philosophical.'
For any readers who are completing a dissertation in philosophy at this time, I suggest this as an epigram: "I mean, like, it sucks, basically, but it happened to me and I'm still alive."