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Home Care in Webster, LA

They say that your golden years are the best years of your life. For most older Americans, that's how it should be - a time to relax, reflect, and live life in a familiar place. After all, senior citizens in the U.S. have worked tirelessly to build a better economy, serve their communities, and raise families.

However, as seniors grow older, sometimes they cannot live independently without someone by their side to provide care. Unfortunately, some older Americans aren't able to rely on their adult children for help. The reality in today's world is that family members do not have the skills or time to dedicate to caring for their parents. That's where Always Best Care Senior Services comes in.

Our in-home care services are for people who prefer to stay at home as they grow older but need ongoing care that family or friends cannot provide. More and more older adults prefer to live in the comforts or their home rather than in an assisted living community. Home care in Webster, LA is a safe, effective way to give your loved ones the care they need when they need it the most.

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Home Care Webster, LA

The Always Best Care Difference

Since 1996, Always Best Care has provided non-medical in-home care for seniors to help them maintain a healthy lifestyle as they age. We are proud to have helped tens of thousands of seniors to maintain a higher level of dignity and respect. We focus on providing seniors with the highest level of home care available so that they may live happily and independently.

Unlike some senior care companies, we genuinely want to be included in our clients' lives. We believe that personalized care is always the better option over a "one size fits all" approach. To make sure our senior clients receive the best care possible, we pair them with compassionate caregivers who understand their unique needs.

The Always Best Care difference lies in life's little moments - where compassionate care and trustworthy experience come together to help seniors live a fruitful, healthy life. Whether you are an aging adult that can't quite keep up with life's daily tasks or the child of a senior who needs regular in-home care services in Webster, LA. Always Best Care is here to help.

How does In-home Senior Care in Webster, LA work?

Home is where the heart is. While that saying can sound a tad cliche, it's especially true for many seniors living in America. When given a choice, older adults most often prefer to grow older at home. An AARP study found that three out of four adults over the age of 50 want to stay in their homes and communities as they age. When you begin to think about why, it makes sense. Home offers a sense of security, comfort, and familiarity.

The truth is, as we age, we begin to rely on others for help. When a family is too busy or lives too far away to fulfill this role, in-home senior care is often the best solution. Home care services allow seniors to enjoy personal independence while also receiving trustworthy assistance from a trained caregiver.

At Always Best Care, we offer a comprehensive range of home care services to help seniors stay healthy while they get the help they need to remain independent. As your senior loved one ages, giving them the gift of senior care is one of the best ways to show your love, even if you live far away.

 In-Home Care Webster, LA

Types of In-home Care in Webster, LA

To give our senior clients the best care possible, we offer a full spectrum of in-home care services:

 Elderly Care Webster, LA

Personal Care Services

If your senior loved one has specific care needs, our personal care services are a great choice to consider. Personal care includes the standard caregiving duties associated with companion care and includes help with tasks such as dressing and grooming. Personal care can also help individuals with chronic conditions like diabetes or Parkinson's or Alzheimer's.

Common personal care services include assistance with:

  • Eating
  • Mobility Issues
  • Incontinence
  • Bathing
  • Dressing
  • Grooming
 Senior Care Webster, LA

Home Helper Services

Sometimes, seniors need helpful reminders to maintain a high quality of life at home. If you or your senior has trouble with everyday tasks like cooking, our home helper services will be very beneficial.

Common home helper care services include assistance with:

  • Medication Reminders
  • Meal Preparation
  • Pet Care
  • Prescription Refills
  • Morning Wake-Up
  • Walking
  • Reading

Respite Care Webster, LA

Companionship Services

Using this kind of care is a fantastic way to make life easier for you or your senior loved one. At Always Best Care, our talented caregivers often fill the role of a companion for seniors. That way, older adults can enjoy their favorite activities and hobbies while also receiving the care they need daily or weekly.

Common companionship services include:

  • Grocery Shopping
  • Transportation to Appointments
  • Nutritional Assistance
  • Conversation
  • Planning Outings
  • Completing Errands
  • Transportation to Community Events and Social Outings
 Caregivers Webster, LA

Respite Care Services

According to AARP, more than 53 million adults living in the U.S. provide care to someone over 50 years old. Unfortunately, these caregivers experience stress, exhaustion, and even depression. Our respite care services help family caregivers address urgent obligations, spend time with their children, and enjoy other activities. Perhaps more importantly, respite care gives family members time to recharge and regroup. Taking personal time to de-stress helps reduce the risks of caregiver burnout.

When it comes to non-medical home care, our goal is to become a valuable part of your senior's daily routine. That way, we may help give them the highest quality of life possible. We know that staying at home is important for your loved one, and we are here to help make sure that is possible. If you have been on the fence about non-medical home care, there has never been a better time than now to give your senior the care, assistance, and companionship they deserve.

Benefits of Home Care in Webster, LA

Always Best Care in-home services are for older adults who prefer to stay at home but need ongoing care that friends and family cannot provide. In-home care is a safe, effective way for seniors to age gracefully in a familiar place and live independent, non-institutionalized lives. The benefits of non-medical home care are numerous. Here are just a few reasons to consider senior care services from Always Best Care:

Home Care Webster, LA
  • Age in Place
    According to AARP, 9 out of 10 seniors prefer to age in place within the comfort of their own home. With in-home care, seniors have a way to stay at home, receive the care they need, and maintain a sense of independence, improving overall wellness.
  • Peace of Mind
    If you or a member of your family have assumed the role of caregiver for your senior loved one, you know how stressful the job can be. Between caregiver burnout and constant worry, being a family caregiver is hard. In-home care relieves your burden and gives you peace of mind knowing that your senior family member is in expert hands.
  • Socialization
    Unlike many senior care facilities where the staff and residents rotate frequently, seniors can foster new friendships and build bonds with their caregiver. Seniors who socialize on a regular basis are often happier, which fosters positivity and leads to increased wellbeing.
  • Personalized Care Plan
    No two seniors need the same kind of in-home care assistance. That is why each of our care plans are tailored to meet our client's individual needs. We offer plans that cover everything from light housekeeping to more involved duties like transportation to doctor's appointments. Our Care Coordinators will work closely with you to develop a personalized plan to ensure your senior's needs are exceeded.

Always Best Care offers a full array of care options for clients at all levels of health. With our trusted elderly care services, your loved one will receive the level of care necessary for them to enjoy the highest possible quality of life.

Aging in Place: The Preferred Choice for Most Seniors

While it's true that some seniors have complicated medical needs that prevent them from staying at home, aging in place is often the best arrangement for seniors and their families. With a trusted caregiver, seniors have the opportunity to live with a sense of dignity and do so as they see fit.

In-home care makes it possible for millions of seniors to age in place every year. Rather than moving to a unfamiliar assisted living community, seniors have the chance to stay at home where they feel the happiest and most comfortable.

 In-Home Care Webster, LA

Here are just a few of the reasons why older men and women prefer to age at home:

Comfort

How much does a senior's home truly mean to them?

A study published by the American Society on Aging found that more than half of seniors say their home's emotional value means more than how much their home is worth in monetary value. It stands to reason, that a senior's home is where they want to grow old. With the help of elderly care in Webster, LA, seniors don't have to age in a sterilized care facility. Instead, they can age gracefully in the place they want to be most: their home. In contrast, seniors who move to a long-term care facility must adapt to new environments, new people, and new systems that the facility implements. At this stage in life, this kind of drastic change can be more harmful than helpful.

Healthy Living

Institutional care facilities like nursing homes often put large groups of people together to live in one location. On any given day, dozens of staff members and caregivers run in and out of these facilities. Being around so many new people in a relatively small living environment can be dangerous for a seniors' health and wellbeing. When you consider that thousands of seniors passed away in nursing homes during the COVID-19 pandemic, opting for in-home care is often a safer, healthier choice for seniors. Aging in place has been shown to improve seniors' quality of life, which helps boost physical health and also helps insulate them from viral and bacterial risks found in elderly living facilities.

Independence

For many seniors, the ability to live independently with assistance from a caregiver is a priceless option. With in-home care, seniors experience a higher level of independence and freedom - much more so than in other settings like an assisted living community. When a senior has the chance to age in place, they get to live life on their own terms, inside the house that they helped make into a home. More independence means more control over their personal lives, too, which leads to increased levels of fulfillment, happiness, and personal gratification. Over time, these positive feelings can manifest into a healthier, longer life.

Cost and Convenience

More independence, a healthier life, and increased comfort are only a few benefits of aging in place. You have to take into consideration the role of cost and convenience. Simply put, it's usually easier to help seniors age in place than it is to move them into an institutional care facility. In-home care services from Always Best Care, for instance, can be less expensive than long-term solutions, which can cost upwards of six figures per year. To make matters worse, many residential care facilities are reluctant to accept long-term care insurance and other types of payment assistance.

 Elderly Care Webster, LA

With Always Best Care's home care services, seniors and their families have a greater level of control over their care plans. In-home care in Webster, LA gives seniors the chance to form a bond with a trusted caregiver and also receive unmatched care that is catered to their needs. In long-term care facilities, seniors and their loved ones have much less control over their care plan and have less of a say in who provides their care.

Affordable Care Plans

In-home care is a valuable resource that empowers seniors to age in place on their own terms. However, a big concern for many families and their loved ones is how much in-home care costs. If you're worried that in-home care is too expensive, you may be pleasantly surprised to learn that it is one of the most affordable senior care arrangements available.

Typically, hiring an Always Best Care in-home caregiver for a few hours a week is more affordable than sending your loved one to a long-term care facility. This is true even for seniors with more complex care needs.

At Always Best Care, we will work closely with you and your family to develop a Care Plan that not only meets your care needs, but your budget requirements, too. Once we discover the level of care that you or your senior need, we develop an in-home care plan that you can afford.

 Senior Care Webster, LA

In addition to our flexible care options, families should also consider the following resources to help offset potential home care costs:

  • Veteran's Benefits: Attendance and aid benefits through military service can cover a portion of the costs associated with in-home care for veterans and their spouses.
  • Long-Term Care Insurance: Many senior care services like in-home care are included in long-term care insurance options. Research different long-term care solutions to find a plan that provides coverage for senior care.
  • Private Insurance: Home care can be included as part of a senior's private insurance plan. Read over your loved one's insurance policy carefully or speak with their insurance provider to determine if in-home care is covered.
  • Life Insurance: Depending on the life insurance plan, you may be able to apply your policy toward long-term care. You may be able to use long-term-care coverage to help pay for in-home elderly care.

During your Care Plan consultation with Always Best Care, your Care Coordinator will speak with you about in-home care costs and what options there may be to help meet your budget needs.

Compassionate Care. Trusted Caregivers

When you or your senior loved one needs assistance managing daily tasks at home, finding a qualified caregiver can be challenging. It takes a special kind of person to provide reliable care for your senior loved one. However, a caregiver's role involves more than meal preparation and medication reminders. Many seniors rely on their caregivers for companionship, too.

Our companion care services give seniors the chance to socialize in a safe environment and engage in activities at home. These important efforts boost morale and provide much-needed relief from repetitive daily routines. A one-on-one, engaging conversation can sharpen seniors' minds and give them something in which to be excited.

At Always Best Care, we only hire care providers that we would trust to care for our own loved ones. Our senior caregivers in Webster,LA understand how important it is to listen and communicate with their seniors. A seemingly small interaction, like a short hug goodbye, can make a major difference in a senior's day. Instead of battling against feelings of isolation, seniors begin to look forward to seeing their caregiver each week.

Understanding the nuances of senior care is just one of the reasons why our care providers are so great at their job.

Unlike some senior care companies, our caregivers must undergo extensive training before they work for Always Best Care. In addition, our caregivers receive ongoing training throughout the year. This training ensures that their standard of care matches up to the high standards we've come to expect. During this training, they will brush up on their communication skills, safety awareness, and symptom spotting. That way, your loved one receives the highest level of non-medical home care from day one.

Taking the First Step with Always Best Care

The first step in getting quality in-home care starts with a personal consultation with an experienced Care Coordinator. This initial consultation is crucial for our team to learn more about you or your elderly loved one to discover the level of care required. Topics of this consultation typically include:

01

An assessment of your senior loved one

02

An in-depth discussion of the needs of your senior loved one to remain in their own home

03

Reviewing a detailed Care Plan that will meet your senior loved one's needs

Our caregivers are trained to spot changes that clients exhibit, like mental and physical decline. As your trusted senior care company, we will constantly assess and update your Care Plan to meet any new emotional, intellectual, physical, and emotional needs.

If you have never considered in-home care before, we understand that you and your family may have concerns about your Care Plan and its Care Coordinator. To help give you peace of mind, know that every team member and caregiver must undergo comprehensive training before being assigned to a Care Plan.

Latest News in Webster, LA

Preguntas y respuestas sobre el niño de seis años que disparó a su profesora en Estados Unidos

Newport News (Virginia) hizo este viernes honor a su nombre al ser escenario una de las noticias más impactantes de comienzo de año. Un niño de 6 años disparó a su profesora en un aula de la Escuela de Primaria Richneck. La maestra, de 30 años e identificada por los medios...

Newport News (Virginia) hizo este viernes honor a su nombre al ser escenario una de las noticias más impactantes de comienzo de año. Un niño de 6 años disparó a su profesora en un aula de la Escuela de Primaria Richneck. La maestra, de 30 años e identificada por los medios locales como Abby Zwerner, sufrió heridas muy graves. En un primer momento se temió por su vida. Su situación médica ha mejorado en las últimas horas.

La policía activó el protocolo habitual en estos casos: avisó a los padres y evacuó a los hijos. Aunque pronto comprobó que no era un tiroteo al uso. Ningún otro profesor ni alumno resultó herido. El niño fue puesto bajo custodia policial. Y a partir de ahí, la cascada de preguntas sobre un caso que ha vuelto a poner de actualidad el debate sobre las armas en Estados Unidos.

No. Steve Drew, del departamento de Policía de Newport News, lo dejó claro en la única rueda de prensa sobre el caso: “El disparo no fue accidental”. Según los testigos, maestra y alumno habían tenido una discusión previa. No trascendió el motivo de la disputa.

Sin respuesta. Los investigadores no han querido entrar en detalles. Tampoco si se la quitó a sus padres, de los que no se ha dado ninguna información. A diferencia de otros estados, Virginia no tiene una ley restrictiva sobre el almacenamiento de armas en los hogares.

Richnek tiene detectores de metales en la entrada, pero se usan aleatoriamente. No todos los alumnos son escaneados. Y menos los de seis años.

No. Según la ley de Virginia, la edad mínima para ser ingresado en una prisión de menores es de 11 años. Lo que sí puede hacer un juez es revocar la custodia del niño por parte de los padres y dársela a la Administración. Si se demuestra, claro está, su responsabilidad en los hechos.

Con perplejidad. El barrio donde está situada la escuela es bastante tranquilo.

La reacción más contundente ha sido la del alcalde de Newport, Phillip Jones: “Es una línea roja para el país (…) Creo que después de este incidente, habrá una discusión a nivel nacional sobre cómo se pueden prevenir este tipo de cosas”.

No. Ha habido 16 incidentes en escuelas protagonizados por menores de 10 años desde 1970. En uno de los casos el atacante tenía 5 años (fue en Tennessee en 2013: disparó accidentalmente un arma y nadie resultó herido).

Daniel W Webster, profesor de la Universidad Johns Hopkins que estudia la violencia armada, advirtió que estaban aumentando los casos de niños pequeños que accedían a armas cargadas y se disparaban a sí mismos o a otros sin querer en los hogares u otros entornos.

Sí. En el año escolar 2020-21 (el último con datos), hubo incidentes en 59 escuelas. El curso anterior fueron 32. Y el año pasado el más grave fue el de Uvalde, en Texas: un hombre mató a 19 estudiantes y dos maestras.

Commentary: What a difference a revival makes: Two famously tricky Sondheim musicals shine in new outings

NEW YORK —At lunch recently in New York with a retired theater critic, I asked if he’d care to join me later in the week for a matinee of the touted Broadway revival of “Into the Woods.” No, he demurred. He had reviewed the original production, and the show, like many of Stephen Sondheim’s musicals, has a second act problem.My distinguished colleague, whom I’ve long considered a mentor, was making decisions based on his energy and interest during the busy holiday period. He longed to be my pl...

NEW YORK —

At lunch recently in New York with a retired theater critic, I asked if he’d care to join me later in the week for a matinee of the touted Broadway revival of “Into the Woods.” No, he demurred. He had reviewed the original production, and the show, like many of Stephen Sondheim’s musicals, has a second act problem.

My distinguished colleague, whom I’ve long considered a mentor, was making decisions based on his energy and interest during the busy holiday period. He longed to be my plus-one for “Merrily We Roll Along,” a Sondheim musical with a notorious track record in the theater, so it isn’t as though he’s averse to recalcitrant material. (That ticket — the hottest in New York for the New York Theatre Workshop production starring Daniel Radcliffe, Jonathan Groff and Lindsay Mendez — was already claimed.)

But his reason for passing on “Into the Woods” made me reflect on critics and their relationship to their own criticism. Of course there are shows that I’ve panned that wild horses couldn’t drag me to see again. But I feel no need to stay true to my published verdicts, especially with works that have a long afterlife.

To be faithful to what I wrote several decades ago would be to betray who I am today. Not only do individuals change, but culture does as well. Art moves kaleidoscopically as new work alters our perception of what has come before and shifting societal norms unearth new sensitivities and blind spots.

In the theater, where ephemerality is built into the show, flux is the only constant. Not only does each new revival of “Hamlet” offer its own spin on the tragedy, but no two performances of even the same production are identical. Every time I encounter the play, I can’t help experiencing aspects of the plot and poetry anew.

What’s true for Shakespeare also holds for mere mortal playwrights. A gifted performer can endow even a flimsy role with gravitas. And the right director has been known to summon coherence where previously only chaos had existed.

What a difference a revival can make! I have long worshiped at the shrine of Henrik Ibsen’s dramatic genius, but I recall muttering to myself after a ponderous regional theater production of “A Doll’s House” that this landmark drama was perhaps too creaky for the modern stage. I couldn’t see beyond the mechanical plotting until a few weeks later I caught Janet McTeer’s towering portrayal of Nora in Anthony Page’s fearless 1997 Broadway revival and declared Ibsen’s masterwork to be the freshest play on Broadway.

But it’s not just a matter of the collaborative personnel. We transform as much as productions do. Why is it that a film that previously annoyed us can sometimes sneak its way into our affections on subsequent viewing?

I’m a great admirer of the mid-20th century English novelist Elizabeth Taylor (sometimes referred to as “the other Elizabeth Taylor”), but I found it difficult to crack her short stories, which are considered some of her finest writing. Last year, however, I devoured “You’ll Enjoy It When You Get There: The Stories of Elizabeth Taylor,” a reading experience that was perhaps the aesthetic pinnacle of my year.

As a child I was an extremely fussy eater, and my defiant stubbornness would provoke loud dinner table scenes. My father vowed that one day I would finally taste the dish I had been avoiding and regret all those years I had passed it up. I can’t say I ever felt that way about asparagus, but his words did haunt me after I finished Taylor’s brilliant collection of short fiction.

Criticism is the art of refining first impressions into second thoughts, which Merriam-Webster defines as “reconsideration or a revised opinion of a previous often hurried decision.” Reviewers leave a show with questions and feelings that find clarity and conviction only through the painstaking act of writing.

Years of composing reviews on tight deadlines have made apparent to me the fluidity of critical judgment. It’s not that I often radically reverse course, but the weighing of perceived strengths and weaknesses into published assessments can make the process seem more mathematical than it really is.

Art doesn’t ask us to solve equations. Rather, it invites us to immerse ourselves in another sensibility. We’re given the opportunity to look at a world through a unique lens that may take some adjusting to but is intended to sharpen our vision of our more prosaic lives.

Work that endures bears repeat viewing. If different generations can find something of value in a play or musical, chances are there’s more there than can be assimilated in a single outing. As a critic, I’m aware that my understanding of a piece isn’t fixed. I may continue to focus on shortcomings. But when faults are known in advance, virtues sometimes have an opportunity to better introduce themselves.

“Into the Woods” doesn’t have a second act problem, but it is a long musical. James Lapine’s book could use some slimming, but I hardly minded because for nearly three hours, as the temperature fell in New York to close to zero degrees, I was in the heat of ecstasy.

The production, which began at New York’s Encores! last May, has been going strong since it opened at Broadway’s St. James Theatre in August. The revolving door ensemble has included a number of musical theater heavyweights. But credit must go to director Lear deBessonet, who has created a canvas both flexible enough and controlled enough to allow the performers to boldly make the roles their own.

I’m thrilled that two of the standouts in the cast I saw (Stephanie J. Block as the Baker’s Wife and Gavin Creel as Cinderella’s Prince and the Wolf) will be traveling with the production when it comes to the Ahmanson Theatre in June. I will miss the understated hilarity of Brian d’Arcy James as the Baker, but I am thrilled that Katy Geraghty as a knife-wielding Little Red Ridinghood will be frolicking to grandmother’s house with her acerbic humor intact.

Truth be told, I haven’t always loved “Into the Woods,” which was originally produced at the Old Globe in 1986. Rob Marshall’s 2014 film floundered despite (or perhaps because of) its embarrassment of Hollywood riches. But when the pieces come together, as they did at the Hollywood Bowl in Robert Longbottom’s 2019 production, the spell of even the second act remains unbroken.

2023 already seems brighter knowing that DeBessonet’s production will be bringing its enchantment to the Ahmanson in June. I’m also happy to report that Maria Friedman’s Broadway-bound production of “Merrily We Roll Along,” a Sondheim musical with a tricky reverse-chronology book by George Furth, succeeds where other stagings have failed.

This unmerry track record includes the revival that Friedman herself directed in London. That production, which started at the Menier Chocolate Factory in 2012, seemed lost when I saw it the following year in the West End at the Harold Pinter Theatre. I had more or less given up hope on anyone solving the problem of “Merrily,” even though the music and the meditation on middle-age malaise have long gripped my soul.

How did Friedman finally manage to figure out this musical puzzle in New York? My answer is Jonathan Groff, whose performance as Franklin Shepard, the once idealistic, golden boy composer who wonders how he sold his soul for Hollywood success, stands beside Lea Michele’s performance in “Funny Girl” as the most deeply inhabited tour de force of 2022.

But another respected theater critic colleague cogently argued over lunch that the production’s key performance is Mendez’s Mary Flynn, the wisecracking, heavy-drinking writer whose unrequited love for Franklin destroys something inside of her. And on Facebook, many discerning commentators are touting the excellence of Radcliffe’s Charley Kringas, the lyricist whose disillusionment over what’s happened to his writing partner, Franklin, matches Mary’s more personal grief.

The triangle, it must be said, is beautifully balanced, but Groff for me is the emotional hypotenuse of a production that I can’t wait to see again after it moves to Broadway in the fall. How will I feel about the revival nearly a year later in a less intimate venue? Who can say? But part of the excitement of repeat theatergoing is not knowing how something overlooked might reach deep into your heart and detonate new meaning.

Op-Ed: The term ‘gaslighting’ is everywhere, but are we using it the right way?

“Stop gaslighting me,” I joked to my brother. He rolled his eyes, “That’s not what the word ‘gaslighting’ means.” “Stop gaslighting me about gaslighting!” I yelled back.Merriam-Webster has just announced that “gaslighting” is their word of the year for 2022, noting that searches for the word on its website have increased a whopping 1,740% from last year. From my perspective as a semanticist — a linguist who studies meaning — the word has two properties that ...

“Stop gaslighting me,” I joked to my brother. He rolled his eyes, “That’s not what the word ‘gaslighting’ means.” “Stop gaslighting me about gaslighting!” I yelled back.

Merriam-Webster has just announced that “gaslighting” is their word of the year for 2022, noting that searches for the word on its website have increased a whopping 1,740% from last year. From my perspective as a semanticist — a linguist who studies meaning — the word has two properties that have been driving us to look it up.

First, its meaning is non-compositional — meaning that the word is not composed of the meaning of its parts. There is nothing in the meaning of the word as we use it today that involves lights or gas. In this sense, it joins the ranks of only a handful of other English terms like “bucket list” and “catfish.” If someone were to encounter the word “gaslight” in a context in which its meaning isn’t fully transparent, they wouldn’t be able to use their inborn skills of semantic deduction to construct its meaning from the ground up, like they might with compositional compound words like “re-unlock.”

Gaslighting is defined, in part, as “psychological manipulation of a person usually over an extended period of time that causes the victim to question the validity of their own thoughts, perception of reality,” according to Merriam-Webster. “Gaslight” has a roundabout, indirect etymology, one that co-opts the title of the 1944 movie, “Gaslight,” which tells the story of a woman whose husband slowly manipulates her into believing that she is losing her mind. The word has become shorthand for the behavior central to the movie’s plot.

Second, and related to my brother’s complaint, the term has undergone an extensive amount of semantic bleaching, and in a very short amount of time. Semantic bleaching is a common process by which a word with a specific meaning comes to take on a more general meaning over time. It’s a natural consequence of language users using their language in innovative ways.

In the case of the word “gaslight,” the specific meaning is the one that tracks the plot of the movie, involving psychological manipulation over a long period of time, culminating in grand-scale emotional abuse. The general meaning is a bleached one, in that it doesn’t require any extended practice or long-term goals. This is the second of Merriam-Webster’s two definitions: “the act or practice of grossly misleading someone especially for one’s own advantage.” By this definition, gaslighting can happen on a single occasion, as long as it’s substantial enough, and deliberate.

An infamous example of semantic bleaching involves the word “literally.” In more traditional usage, it describes characterizations that are accurate to the letter (literally). Its bleached use doesn’t require any amount of accuracy, but instead confers emphasis. But this bleached use of the word “literally” has been building up in the collective English lexicon for over 300 years, traceable back to novels published in the 1790s.

In the case of “gaslight,” we’ve only had the term in its non-compositional sense, since 1944, and its use only really started taking off in the 2000s. That means we’ve squished an often centuries-long process of semantic transformation into just two decades. It’s no surprise, then, that the result is disagreement about the proper use of the term. So my brother does have a point, but so do I.

Jessica Rett is a professor of linguistics at UCLA. Her research investigates the meaning of words and how they contribute to the meanings of sentences, either in isolation or in broader contexts.

Elon Musk Reinstates Accounts of Several Journalists He Had Banned Over Claim They ‘Doxxed’ Him

Elon Musk taketh away, and Elon Musk giveth.Late Friday night, the mercurial mega-billionaire unilaterally announced that he was unbanning journalists whose accounts had been suspended a day before — which Musk claimed had “doxxed” him by posting links to an ...

Elon Musk taketh away, and Elon Musk giveth.

Late Friday night, the mercurial mega-billionaire unilaterally announced that he was unbanning journalists whose accounts had been suspended a day before — which Musk claimed had “doxxed” him by posting links to an account that tracks his private jet. Until this week, the CEO of Twitter, Tesla and SpaceX had been OK with the jet-tracker remaining on the social network he acquired for $44 billion.

“The people have spoken,” Musk tweeted just after midnight ET. “Accounts who doxxed my location will have their suspension lifted now.” Musk was referring to a poll he posted about when to reinstate the accounts he’d blocked. After nearly 3.7 million votes, 59% of the votes were in favor of lifting the bans “now” while the rest voted for “in 7 days.” Musk similarly had decided to reinstate Donald Trump’s account last month based on a straw poll, after claiming he was forming a council with “diverse viewpoints” to weigh in on such questions.

The journalists Musk had banned have disputed his assertion they “doxxed” him. To some observers, it appeared that the tech titan — as the sole decision-maker at Twitter — was trying to silence critics of his reign at the company.

“To be clear, there was no ‘doxing’ — even if an impulsive, accountable-to-nobody oligarch said so,” Tony Webster, a journalist and photographer whose account was among those suspended on Dec. 16, tweeted on Friday night. He quoted his most recent tweet before he was suspended, which said, “If you aren’t willing to admit that Elon Musk lied to you about his ‘free speech’ goals, you are simply in denial at this point.”

As of Friday night, accounts that had been restored included those of independent journalist Aaron Rupar (@atrupar), the New York Times’ Ryan Mac (@RMac18), the Washington Post’s Drew Harwell (@drewharwell), CNN’s Donie O’Sullivan (@donie), Mashable’s Matt Binder (@MattBinder), the Intercept’s Micah Lee (@micahflee) and Tony Webster (@webster).

“Quite frankly, a few days away from Twitter is good for their mental health,” Musk smirked in a late-night tweet.

Twitter also Friday reinstated the account of Mastodon (@joinmastodon), which had tweeted a link to the ElonJet account on its own service. Still suspended at press time were the accounts of political commentator and podcaster Keith Olbermann (@keitholbermann) and Insider’s Linette Lopez (@lopezlinette), who has reported on Musk and his companies for years. Lopez told the AP that shortly prior to her suspension she had posted court-related documents to Twitter that included an email address for Musk from 2018 but which Lopez said was not current because “he changes his email every few weeks.”

“Olbermann tweeting from his dog’s account still makes me lmao,” Musk commented.

The move by Musk — who claims he’s a “free speech absolutist” — to suspend the accounts of the high-profile journalists came after he banned the @ElonJet account and other plane-tracking bots on Wednesday, citing the need to ensure the safety of his family. Also Wednesday, Twitter issued a brand-new rule prohibiting accounts from sharing the real-time location of individuals, even if the data information is otherwise publicly available. Several of the journalists’ accounts that were suspended had tweeted about the jet-tracker and linked to its new account on rival social network Mastodon.

Last month, Musk said Twitter would grant “amnesty” to all suspended accounts and reinstate them (“provided that they have not broken the law or engaged in egregious spam”). That included neo-Nazi Andrew Anglin, founder of white-supremacist site the Daily Stormer, whom Twitter banned in 2013.

Rupar, after his account was reinstated, tweeted, “I want to thank everyone for all the support and kind words over the past day and some change. I was pretty bummed about getting suspended initially but quickly realized it’d be fine because I’m blessed to have an amazing online community. Seriously, I appreciate it a lot. Cheers.”

Rupar previously had told CNN that he had not posted anything on Twitter about @ElonJet. He has been critical of Musk in his tweets and reporting. For example, on Dec. 15, Rupar tweeted, “can’t wait for Twitter to ban Elon Musk for violating the policy the company just announced hours ago,” quote-tweeting a video clip Musk had posted of a masked person in a car that revealed its license plate and asking, “Anyone recognize this person or car?” Earlier, Musk had said in a tweet that a car in which his 2-year-old son was riding on Tuesday evening in L.A. “was followed by [a] crazy stalker (thinking it was me), who later blocked car from moving & climbed onto hood.”

Since closing the deal for Twitter less than two months ago, Musk has massively shaken up the company. In addition to axing 50% of Twitter’s staff, he’s moved to try to generate revenue from Twitter Blue by making the paid service the only way to get a “verified” blue check-mark going forward.

Webster Parish tow truck driver saves woman stuck in burning car; sheriff gives him special life-saving award

On Monday, Nov. 14, Sheriff Jason Parker awarded Andrew Lincoln with a special life-saving award for his heroic actions involving a car crash victim on Oct. 9.WEBSTER PARISH, La. (KSLA) - A tow truck driver in Webster Parish received a special award from the sheriff for saving a woman’s life.On Monday, Nov. 14, Sheriff Jason Parker awarded Andrew Lincoln with a special life-saving award for his heroic actions involving a car crash victim on Oct. 9. On that day, Lincoln, who works for Harmons Towing and Recovery, was heade...

On Monday, Nov. 14, Sheriff Jason Parker awarded Andrew Lincoln with a special life-saving award for his heroic actions involving a car crash victim on Oct. 9.

WEBSTER PARISH, La. (KSLA) - A tow truck driver in Webster Parish received a special award from the sheriff for saving a woman’s life.

On Monday, Nov. 14, Sheriff Jason Parker awarded Andrew Lincoln with a special life-saving award for his heroic actions involving a car crash victim on Oct. 9. On that day, Lincoln, who works for Harmons Towing and Recovery, was headed from Sibley to Haughton on Highway 164 on a towing call when he noticed a wrecked vehicle on the side of the road.

As he got closer to the wreck, he was flames coming from the car. He stopped his truck and yelled, “Is someone in the car?” Another man who had stopped told him there was someone inside, but that the door was jammed.

Lincoln sprang into action.

“The flames were already coming through the seat of the car, and it was melted the inside of the car was pretty much burning,” he said

He parked his truck in the middle of the highway, turned on his emergency flashers, and rushed to help the person trapped inside.

“I did not notice there were already some folks on the scene that I guess was behind her, and that’s when I realized they were trying to get in the driver’s door that was smashed in,” Lincoln said.

He was able to get the passenger door open and tried to pull the woman out, but she was still stuck. Meanwhile, the flames were getting bigger.

At this point, Lincoln says the smoke was so thick, he could barely see. He says he could also feel his pants beginning to melt because of the heat. Lincoln says he took off his shirt, wrapped it under her arms, and pulled her out of the car.

Within minutes after pulling her out, the car was completely engulfed in fire. Lincoln said he wasn’t the only hero at the scene.

“I’m glad that she is alive and from what I understand back at work. And if it happened today, I’d do the same thing all over again.”

Because of his heroic actions, the Webster Parish Sheriff’s Office presented him with a life-saving award.

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