Sabbatical Diary 2011-07-25

After three weeks of sabbatical, I feel my mind slowly becoming less full of clutter and I may be ready to tackle some substantial projects (outlined below). In the mean time:

  • There was a lot of high quality soccer this month (almost all of it at the Women’s World Cup, which was simply fantastic, and almost none of it was at the Copa America, a disappointing showing from teams like Argentina and Brazil).
  • I have started training for the BAA Half Marathon on October 9. I’m running just about 20 miles a week with a long weekend run of 7 miles and soon more. Unless the weather is too muggy, this feels good.
  • Lion arrived last week and I am happily using it on my laptop and my soon take the plunge on my big computer as well, since it’s weird to switch between operating systems. The new TeXShop for Lion is especially impressive.
  • I wrote two Language Log posts: one on the meaning of “any” according to the Supreme Court and one on the difference between “smelly” and “tasty”.
  • I have started posting some short stuff to Google+, instead of Facebook or shorter posts on this blog. You’re welcome to join me there.
  • S&P is chugging along nicely. We’re just about to publish our fourth paper this year and have many fascinating articles in the pipeline. We hope that all of you are considering us seriously as the venue for the fruits of your summer work. We think there is no better journal in our field. Also: if you have something to say about any of the articles we publish, consider submitting a short commentary, for which we offer expedited editorial review.

On my plate for the next few weeks:

  • Finally finishing a handbook article about “subjunctive conditionals” (whatever that means) for the Routledge Companion to Philosophy of Language edited by Delia Graff Fara and Gillian Russell, who have been suffering from my tardiness way too long.
  • Thony and I (among many other projects) need to write a handbook article on deontic modality in natural language, in the course of which I would like to better understand the recent work on the miners’ puzzle.
  • Sabine and I (among many other projects) want to figure out how it happens that imperatives are used in so-called IaDs (“Make one false move and I’ll kill you!”). We have lots of cross-linguistic observations and plenty of difficulties for existing theories, and so it would be nice to tie it all together in a positive account.
  • Starting work on a book about the semantics of conditionals …, which is the big project for this year.

Early this fall, I’m visiting Cornell University and the University of Connecticut for colloquium talks, and I’m trying to see whether I can give two talks (on deontics and on IaDs) in both places. The next few weeks will tell.

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