Who uses it: Geologists and engineers
What it means: The angle of repose is the point at which gravel or loose material on a slope is stable, so that engineers can build on it. At the angle of repose, if anyone dumps more dirt or debris on the slope, it slides down and realigns itself, making the slope unstable.
How you can use it: To describe a state of equilibrium that may be precarious. (Actually, any state of equilibrium is precarious, but that's a post for another day.)
Up early this morning to head out to Glen Ellyn, to see my uncle Gerry McLaughlin and his family. Last night's Anthony Awards banquet was an excellent time. The Academy Awards might consider inviting Harlan Coben, last night's toastmaster, to host next year's show; I doubt the awards presentations took more than half an hour, though they didn't feel rushed. The winners:
Best Non-Fiction Book: Max Allan Collins, Men's Adventure Magazines
Best Paperback Original: Jason Starr, Twisted City
Best First Novel: Harley Jane Kozak, Dating Dead Men
Best Short Story: Elaine Viets, "Wedding Knife"
Best Cover Art: Brooklyn Noir
Best Novel: William Kent Krueger, Blood Hollow
So ends my very first Bouchercon, and it was a rocking good time. I made some new friends and fervently hope I didn't alienate any old ones. God willing, next year in Madison.