One of the University’s English professors took the time to write a lovely editorial for the Minnesota Daily.
I felt compelled to respond — partly because I am in agreement with his institutional politics (but not for the purely semantic main thrust of his argument that research doesn’t include the activities of the humanities), but mostly because he used the word “cache” when he meant “cachet.”
There is an undeniable cache in being associated with great discoveries, and we ought to cash in on it.
I hope that the pun in that sentence was intentional, because loading up “cash” with additional meaning draws attention to it and the phrase in which it resides: “cash in.” The University is becoming less and less of a public service and more of a cash-driven enterprise. Unfortunately, “cachet” and “cache” are not homonyms, so the correct word sucks some of the joy out of the sentence.
I sent the good professor this email:
Dear Professor Weinsheimer,
Thanks for your terrific editorial. I am in complete agreement.
However, I would be remiss if I did not point out that you used the word “cache” when you meant “cachet.”
He finally got back to me today:
Thanks for your words of support and for correcting my spelling.
So, just to finish “taking the piss” as Zach (and those crazy Brits) say it:
You are most welcome! Any time you need help with English, please consider me an open book — a “dictionary,” if you will.
Did I mention that Professor Weinsheimer is a professor of English? I’m so failing his class.