04.15.2017 § Leave a comment
I’ve been in Japan for almost three months and just realized that two amusing things I’ve encountered follow a pattern: they are puns on words which have been converted into katakana, and are only possible after conversion into katakana.
Information is lost when converting to katakana. The distinction between many vowels is lost, as there are only five vowel sounds in Japanese (something like 20 in English). The distinction between r and l is lost; both become the Japanese consonant r which is somewhere between r and l. The distinction between syllable terminal m and n is lost; both become the Japanese consonant n which ends up sounding like an n or an m depending on the voicing of the consonant beginning the next syllable.
Consider two words which in their native language would not be similarly enough pronounced to make puns out of. Once converted into katakana, their pronunciations are simplified and converge such that they are similar enough to make puns out of. Thus they are un-de-katakan-ifi-able puns.
Here’s the examples I’ve found so far.
Sherlock Holmes + rock n’ roll = Sherlock n’ Roll!
pain (French for bread, pronounced pɛ̃) + lampshade = pampshade
smooth + zoo = smoozoo
01.23.2016 § Leave a comment
a type of poem which follows the form of an anagram but instead of each line starting with the letter of the vertical word, a word which doesn’t start with that letter is chosen and it is misspelled to start with that letter (which may or may not also be a word, or you can just add or delete letters, as long as the word you intend is recognizable, if only from context)
04.27.2015 § Leave a comment
- Albert Randal Bertrand
- Alvincent Calvincent Kevincent Marvincent
- Harvis Marvey Jarvin
- Jasperry Walterry Lesterry Peterry Reubenjaminsteresa
- Landonaldous Brandonaldous Byronaldous Rogeraldous Archibaldous
- Irwinfrederick Patrichard Cedricardoyle Ericardoris Borishmael
- Beatrisharold Alisharondonna
- Zacharold Isaacarrie Z’chloey
- Alexandrew Elmirandrew
- Antom Christophil Joseth
- Oscarson Connorson
- Gordonny Aaronny
- Kirk Kurt Kirby
- Klyle Elyle
- Justin Jason Jay Stan
- Gregarett Roregisergerry
- Bethanigel Ethaniles Leomarjordaniel
- Veronicole Dominicholas Simonichols
- Karen Erin Ren
- Haydennis Cadenny
- Gwendellindsay Owendalon
- Maddison Alysonya
- Sarachelen Shelbevshirley
- Douglance Halan
- Celester Leslibby
- Natashawayne Shaunnon
- Jodie Judie Julie Jolie
- Taylorraine Tyleen
- Heatherbert Norburton
- Treymond Treycy Trevirma Trevis Travor
- Breese Bruth Bluke Blaiken
- Ernold Barnest Arney Bernor Vernard (Fern)
- Midgeoffrida Humphritzgeraldinah
- Dustan Danley
- Tobiastridley Phinneaster
- Kimelinda Jezebelinda
- Maximilliam Maxwilliam Maxingrid
- Jackeith Olivickieran Victorrance
- Lucasey Lucilia
- Jonald Donas
08.29.2014 § Leave a comment
- an object whose inherent nature is irrelevant, and which
- functions as a place-holding constant driving goal of the plot.
However, as a Chekhov’s thing, it must both:
- eventually have the effect of its inherent nature executed on, and
- besides the two moments of first its initial mentioning and then its ultimate use, be otherwise left unaddressed.
So on both aspect 1 and aspect 2, MacGuffins and Chekhov’s things are exactly opposites.
Also, I just like how it sounds, since “MacGuffin” has the same phonetic ‘guh’ sound as “gun”. Plus the juxtaposition of Chekhov being such a Russian name and MacGuffin being such a Scottish name is amusing, too.
05.06.2014 § Leave a comment
In layman’s terms, take the “shm” sound from “consequences, shmonsequences” then add on the word “leg.” Then repeat the “shm” and add the first syllable of “linear”. One could write the word “Shmlegshmlin” for a more intuitive pronunciation, and indeed I used to spell it that way before I developed the General American English phonemic transcription which I use for sound poetry today.
So, no, it’s not kuh-muh-low-igg-kuh-muh-loo-inn. It’s just two syllables. Sounds like a diminutive demon.
Bonus question: what does Cmloegcmluin mean? I don’t quite know yet.
01.05.2014 § 2 Comments
For fun, as a Pig Latin sort of thing, you can take the consonants of each word and cycle them against the vowels. For example, David Foster Wallace becomes:
Dadiv Rofset Ceawall
As you can see, I didn’t simply move the consonants. I was working by sound, rather than writing, and used the spelling of the word as I could. Had I simply moved them by writing, I’d’ve gotten “Cawlale”, which has appeal of its own, but I prefer to preserve as much of the phonetic content of the original as well as reasonable spelling to back it up. So I would pronounce “Ceawall” not like “SEA wall”, but as “SAH-wull”, retaining the vowel sounds from his actual last name.