Please further explain these sentences – He doesn't believe in fines; he believes in benchings. Guys make too much to care about fines, he says. Burying them gets their attention – from your column From the Old School (February 5, 2008). I don't quite understand what they're about, especially these words, "fines", "benchings" and "burying".
These things you pick up by osmosis, or gradually – after meeting them time and again. This is where hobbies come into play.
"Fines, benchings and burying" are concepts of NBA basketball. If you're not a basketball fan and don't give a hoot about what Yao Ming is up to etc, close this window and read something else. On the other hand, if you are a basketball fan, you'll probably want to find out more about them. And you know what, if you follow the news, you are likely to see these words every once in a while. That's what I mean by saying you can pick up new words or expressions by osmosis instead of, say, having to look every word up every single time – and tire yourself out in the process.
Being a basketball fan and having just watched the All-Star Game, I find myself in a good mood to further explain these terms – fines, benchings and burying. So here you go.
When players don't observe team rules, a coach has a few punishment measures to mete out. He may fine them a certain amount of money. Or he may bench them, that is, to sit them on the bench instead of letting them play. The coach in the story being from the old school, he doesn't believe in fines. To his way of thinking, today's players make way too much money to care about fines. Shaquille O'Neal, for example, makes $20 million a year. Is he going to care if his coach fines him, say, 5,000 bucks for missing a practice? No, a few bucks lost is not going to catch his attention.
But benchings – sitting him on the bench – do. And burying him at the deep end of the bench most certainly does.
If a player is not allowed to play, his value diminishes and come time for a new contract, his chances of getting another fat paycheck would diminish accordingly. Shaq is not a good example here. Shaq is not worried about another contract. His current contract, paying him $20 million dollars annually, has two more year to run and he will likely call it a career by that time. Therefore, Shaq is pretty safe all-round. If not for pride, Shaq would not bother about minutes and playing time. But another player, a younger one, definitely will worry about minutes and playing time (a player's playing time, the time he spends on court each game, is recorded in minutes as a regular NBA game last 48 minutes). Yi Jianlian, for example, will worry about playing time. In fact, being on the court playing – and playing a lot if he could help it – means everything to him. It's his livelihood. Rest assured it won't sit well with him if he is told to sit on the bench all the time. Therefore, benching and burying (if the benching lasts a considerable time, it will be as if the player were buried deep among benchwarmers) will certainly get his attention, that is, force him to learn a lesson.
That's the philosophy of a coach from the old school, an old coach for sure and smart thinking from a cunning old dog.
Well, in these explanations, you've seen "fines", "benchings" and "burying" each in action a number of times. That's how you pick up new words by osmosis, that is, by seeing them often – and gradually let them sink in. The cause is helped if you have a hobby which allows you to follow a particular subject on a regular basis.
Now, don't say you don't have a hobby – just develop one – or give another lame excuse.
Even if you have no hobbies and have no intention creating one, you can still learn by osmosis – I have inexhaustible punishments for you. You can, for example, read the dictionary for new words.
Only that then you will definitely be looking every word up.
Including, of course, osmosis.
If you had not tired yourself out by then.