Re: Naming a detective division

Nichael Lynn Cramer (
Mon, 20 May 1996 13:04:33 -0400

At 10:24 AM 5/20/96, Carl W. Conrad wrote:
>At 7:49 PM -0500 5/17/96, wrote:
>> I have a unique request. The Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department,
>> detective division has approached me to ask if I could come up with a phrase
>> in Greek that they could title a unit's project.
>> This project is titled DIRC: Detective Information Resource Center. Their
>> job is to do investigations for many other crime units. They search for
>> locations, criminal records, crime patterns, etc. for other units. They have
>> access to some of the most sophisticated computer resource systems that exist
>> to do their research. Their main goal is to assist other detective units put
>> bad guys in jail by doing research via computer databases.
>> Given this initial description, I wanted to ask if any of you could come up
>> with a Greek phrase that would be catchy to put with the DIRC name. They are
>> looking for something catchy with a meaning pointing to their work, similar
>> to the E. PLURIBUS UNUM on the U.S. coin. They want others who see it to
>> ask them what it means and then they would tell them it means something.
>> Could you help me produce a little two to four word phrase in Greek?
>> I asked them if they could produce a phrase and then give it to me to
>> translate into Greek, but they wanted me to try to come up with something
>> first.
>While admittedly it is fun to play around with versions of such things,
>does anyone ever find such requests annoying, as I do, on grounds that
>somebody wants to make a nice impression and show off a bit of erudition
>that they don't have. Where mottoes are a matter of tradition deriving from
>an era when people COULD read Greek and Latin, but I've gotten to the point
>that I have started charging fees for this sort of sham cleverness.
>There've been some weird things: I had once to invent a Latin title for an
>"International Society for Contact Lens Research;" on another occasion an
>obstetrician's secretary asked for a Latin motto to be put on a birthday
>cake, translating, "No fetus can defeat us."
>But what's the point in assisting other people to make a show of learning
>that they don't have?


I would assume that BibAnsMan would do the honourable thing and report back
to the LAPD to the effect that "Nope, I couldn't come up with a darn thing;
however I did some nosing around, and here is an especially apropos
response from my good friend Prof Carl Conrad: 'Semper Ubi Sub Ubi'" ... or
something to that effect.

On the other hand, if the primary concern is that nodody will be able to
_read_ the thing... Well, we're already in the deep stuff. Perhaps we
should all meet next saturday morning in Harvard Yard with sand-paper and
mortar. ;-)

Nichael __ Be as passersby -- IC