I leave the use of colloquial speech and turn to the study of language, and particularly the study of words. The staircase you see on the screen is at the Vatican and is very elegant. The one I wish to speak about was in Manchester and not at all elegant. But the basic nature of both is the same, the staircase hugging the four walls as it turns around a central stairwell. I was an undergraduate student in Manchester entering the final year of my B.A. programme and meeting the tutor of my special subject on French Vocabulary in the computer building of the university. My tutor, Peter Wexler, was one of the first to record words, plays and poems, on computer and had told me to meet him on the top floor. As I mounted the stairs I noticed that dangling in the stairwell was a long streamer of magnetic tape which jerked upwards as I ascended. When I reached the top, there was my tutor leaning over the banister holding a large reel on a pencil and turning it by hand to wind in the tape that had spilled from it. At the time I just thought it was funny. But later, the tape became in my mind a sort of fly-trap reeling me upwards into a web of words.    

From: http://www.christusrex.org/www1/vaticano/MO-Moderna.html