Saturday, May 9, 2009
Stay The Course or Come About
If you follow my blog, you know from my earlier posts that years ago, I had a sailboat and used to crew on sailboats. There are phrases used in sailing that are romantic and have lots of meanings, because they've been around a long time they sometimes take on new meanings in modern times.
This emblem has been on my mind to create, with the words "STAY THE COURSE" on it. The face in the center reminds me of a carved ebony piece, with the words surrounding it, as though it might be an historical piece from an old sailboat or steamship.
Yesterday I posed some questions that I've been pondering. You can read those there, they relate to values, questions about success, about being true to oneself. About how to measure success, relationships with other creative folks who might be considered competitors, about the sharing and interactions between like-minded people.
So I created this emblem with the phrase "STAY THE COURSE" and it's the subject of this giveaway. It's quite large, could be used in jewelry, on the cover of an altered book, or whatever you please.
The reverse side has script from the Book of Kells, it's sourrounded in metal with wire, I made it very sturdy and with a very old-fashioned vintage look.
So I did some looking up of the phrase, to help spark your comments and ideas, as you help me think about these topics I brought up in the earlier post. I found that "STAY THE COURSE" actually has contradictory meanings in different contexts, which I thought was facinating. What better phrase to talk about mental confusion than a single quotation with quite opposing meanings?
In one useage "stay the course" originated as a nautical metaphor on maintaining a constant, unaltering course while navigating. That's the one I was thinking about, holding the ship steady, going in the appointed direction. Follow your star, that sort of thing.
But before that, citations for 'stay the course' have the opposing sense of 'to stop or check the course (of something).' Isn't that interesting?
"Stay the course" is a phrase used in the context of a war or battle meaning to pursue a goal regardless of any obstacles or criticism.
–The word STAY used as a noun has these meanings:
the act of stopping or being stopped; a stop, halt, or pause; a standstill; a sojourn or temporary residence: a week's stay in Miami. Informal. staying power; endurance.
—Idiom. stay the course, to persevere; endure to completion.
The word STAY used as a verb has some interesting connections, too.
STAY - tr.v. stayed, stay·ing, stays
To brace, support, or prop up.
To strengthen or sustain mentally or spiritually.
To rest or fix on for support.
The word STAY used as a noun leads to some other thoughts and meanings.
(Naut.) A large, strong rope, employed to support a mast, by being extended from the head of one mast down to some other, or to some part of the vessel. Those which lead forward are called fore-and-aft stays; those which lead to the vessel's side are called backstays;
1. To stop from motion or falling; to prop; to fix firmly; to hold up; to support.
Aaron and Hur stayed up his hands, the one on the one side, and the other on the other side. --Ex. xvii. 12.
Sallows and reeds . . . for vineyards useful found To stay thy vines. --Dryden.
2. To support from sinking; to sustain with strength; to satisfy in part or for the time. He has devoured a whole loaf of bread and butter, and it has not staid his stomach for a minute. --Sir W. Scott.
3. To bear up under; to endure; to support; to resist successfully.
She will not stay the siege of loving terms, Nor bide the encounter of assailing eyes. --Shak.
4. To hold from proceeding; to withhold; to restrain; to stop; to hold.
Him backward overthrew and down him stayed With their rude hands grisly grapplement. --Spenser. All that may stay their minds from thinking that true which they heartly wish were false. --Hooker.
5. To hinder; to delay; to detain; to keep back. Your ships are stayed at Venice. --Shak. This business staid me in London almost a week. --Evelyn. I was willing to stay my reader on an argument that appeared to me new. --Locke.
6. To remain for the purpose of; to wait for. "I stay dinner there." --Shak.
7. To cause to cease; to put an end to. Stay your strife. --Shak. For flattering planets seemed to say This child should ills of ages stay. --Emerson.
8. (Engin.) To fasten or secure with stays; as, to stay a flat sheet in a steam boiler.
9. (Naut.) To tack, as a vessel, so that the other side of the vessel shall be presented to the wind.
So, if you'd like to win the giveaway of the emblem, with "STAY THE COURSE" and the various meanings of the prhase and the words, post a comment here about the topics raised in the previous post, with some extra hints and helps from the meanings above, to prime the pump.
Of course, only one person will win the emblem when the Random Number Generator picks your post, but everyone who posts a thoughtful and helpful reply, agreeing or disagreeing, giving an insight or point of view here will get a little 'thank you' bonus from me.
WHAT'S YOUR ADVICE-CAUTION-SUGGESTION on how I should "Stay the Course" or not? How should success be measured, what's the meaning of success to you? Is it numbers, sales, recognition, feeling of achievement, sharing, learning new things ... All your words of wisdom, experience, book recommendations and ideas are WELCOME and thank you in advance.
Post is closed for additional comments, but be sure to read the interesting and pithy ideas shared with me here!