Friday, February 26, 2010

Phrases & Expressions: Sabotage

So almost all good news regarding the spring launch of the first itinerary of the Time Traveler Tours:
  • The website is up and running at;

  • I selected a POD specialist to set up the print version of the prototype itinerary;

  • I've partnered with a mobile device specialist to program the iPhone application for the first itinerary;

  • I've acquired permissions to duplicate many of the images selected to illustrate the first itinerary; but...

...most of the desired images, all hailing from the era of the French Revolution and therefore in the public domain, are in French museums and are controled by a single agency. And it appears that this agency may be demanding a healthy sum for their use. A sum I will not be able to pay.

I'm working on finding a resolution to the problem. And no doubt there is one. But in the meantime, it feels like sabotage.

Did you know that the word sabotage originates from French? The story goes like this:

Back in the early 19th century, as the Industrial Revolution took off in France, laborers dropped their shovels and pick axes and left their ancestral fields for work in the growing numbers of factories and coal mines. They sought a better life; they hoped for a better economic future for their families. But work was hard and conditions were unbearable. People were pushed to phyical extremes on bellies that remained empty day after day after day. They soon found that there was no hope.

In those days, poor French laborers wore a type of wooden shoe or clog called a sabot. And when their hunger became unendurable and their hope forgotten they rose up as one to strike. They used their wooden sabots to jam the machines of the factories all over France. With their sabots they stopped all production; they sabotaged the captains of industry.

Today, it feels like the behemoth that is the French bureaucracy is sabotaging the future of the TTT. But we,too, shall overcome.

Stay posted...

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